Sweet feeling of Socceroos call-up driving Fornaroli

In-form forward Bruno Fornaroli says his brief dalliance with the Socceroos has left him craving more as he eyes an unlikely recall to Graham Arnold’s squad for January's Asian Cup. 

The Socceroos boss will unveil his squad next week with Fornaroli’s electrifying form for unbeaten A-League Men side Melbourne Victory boosting the veteran striker’s chances of a call-up.

Uruguayan-born Fornaroli won his two previous caps in cameos in March last year and hasn’t been selected by the Australia coach since. 

But the 36-year-old’s remarkable form - Fornaroli has 11 goals in seven ALM games this season - has led to the likes of Archie Thompson calling on Arnold to take the forward to Qatar next month. 

Fornaroli bagged four goals in last week’s 4-3 win over Western Sydney and says he never gave up hope of playing for “this beautiful country” again.

“Ask any single player they will not say 'no, I don't want to play for the national team' - that would be crazy,” Fornaroli said on Thursday. 

"I want to be back with the Socceroos, but like I said before I have to keep doing my job, help the team, and focus on my club.

"It was only two games - it's like when you give candy to a little kid and you take it off them after.

"The desire is always to do well and come back and play at a good level in international games.” 

Fornaroli shapes as a straight replacement for Wanderers forward Brandon Borrello, who fought his way back into national team contention but has since been ruled out of the tournament with an ankle injury.

While Arnold has relied heavily on Mitchell Duke, concerns over Jamie Maclaren and Mathew Leckie may force him to turn to Fornaroli.

Victory great turned Network Ten pundit Thompson has been blown away by Fornaroli’s revival since arriving at the club 12 months ago, and says the striker’s strength will give Australia an extra dimension. 

“At the age of 36 scoring like he is, it has been ridiculous,” Thompson said. 

“You see the goals but it’s the work without the ball which is incredible . He’s at his peak at 36 which is remarkable. 

“I don’t think there’s a player like Bruno who can really hold the ball up and score goals as well. 

“You never know how a tournament like this is going to play out so you can use him as a sub or a starter … with his physicality in Asia he’d be perfect.” 

Fornaroli has one last chance to impress Arnold when Victory host Sydney FC in Saturday’s Big Blue at AAMI Park.

The evergreen forward was keen to underline his career revival was just as much credit to his teammates.

"For me it's important the work the team is doing ... I can't score alone,” Fornaroli said. 

"I depend on what my teammates do and they do a great job to find me in a good spot.

"Everyone asks me how, at 36, you keep scoring and it makes me feel I have to improve and show every single week - not just in the games, also in training.

"I have a big responsibility to show my teammates, the young generation as well, if you want to be successful you have to work hard.”

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