The 22-year-old ex-OlyWhites international has hit the ground running since arriving at one of the nation’s paramount clubs, Viking SK, two months ago.
He’s already made seven appearances for a club chasing a Europa League spot and believes success in Scandinavia could open doors across the Continent.
“This is a good development league with a lot of players moving on to bigger clubs over the years,” Stensness told FTBL.
“This club really wanted me, they were willing to pay a fee which was a good sign they wanted to help me develop as a player.
“I really wanted to get on a European stage - in the eyes of many the A-League doesn’t have that much credibility and it was about that as well.
“Viking is a big step up from Mariners and I think the league as a whole is a step up.
“It’s a professional club and when you think about history and culture around football, this club was founded in 1899.
“It’s great to be somewhere where football is the biggest sport and you have great atmosphere at games.”
The Dark Blues boast eight league titles - most recently in 1991 - and five domestic cups.
The relative strength of the competition was evident last week when Norwegian side.
Bodo/Glimt routed Jose Mourinho’s Roma 6-1 in the Europa Conference League - possibly the most embarrassing night of his long coaching career.
Viking knocked Chelsea out of the UEFA Cup 17 years back and have played more top flight games than any of their domestic rivals.
“You saw the Roma result against the league leaders here and that tells you something,” added Stensness.
“The pace is fast, the players are generally more technical than the A-League and it’s a really good transition for me.
“I’m just finding my feet here and representing my club as well as I can but I have bigger dreams as well, to be in bigger leagues and keep on progressing.
“I arrived at the midway point in the season and want to do my part in helping us qualify for Europe.
“The club are happy with me so far - to have come in and get a starting spot so quickly.
“I have a lot of confidence in myself and have backed myself to show I can be one of the better players in the team. It’s taken a lot of hard work but I’m getting there.”
Born and raised in Australia, Stensness last month pledged his international future to the green and gold, despite his Olympic Games adventure with New Zealand.
He has reunited with compatriot and ex-OlyWhites teammate Joe Bell at Viking.
“We played at the U-20 World Cup together in 2020 and also in Tokyo and we know each other’s games inside out,” he said.
“Joe has helped me settle in. The club is also great. The only thing is the weather - it’s already cold, dark and wet (as the long Nordic winter begins to kick in).”