First Asian Cup, now Rio on Terris Antonis’ radar

Terry Antonis in camp with the Olyroos at the U-23 Championship in Doha.

He was a part of the Socceroos’ historic Asian Cup success last year, now Terry Antonis is craving Olympic qualification with the Olyroos.

“What I’ll take out of [the Asian Cup triumph] is the exact same thing that we did over there, to do it here,” Antonis told FFA TV.

“As you saw [the Asian Cup] was an amazing result, fingers crossed we get the same thing here.

“Words can’t describe [what it would mean to qualify for the Olympics],” Antonis added.

“To be there in around amazing athletes, super athletes I guess, to get there with Australia would be massive.”

Antonis is likely to play a key role for Aurelio Vidmar’s squad over the next two weeks, as they aim to finish in the top three of the AFC U-23 Championships in Doha to confirm their spot in Rio.

The Olyroos’ Group D games in Doha:

• UAE this Thursday January 14 (Friday morning AEDT)

• Vietnam January 17

• Jordan January 20

While the 22-year-old hasn’t played much first-team football at Greek club PAOK so far this season, Antonis says he’s in top-shape to be a big influence for the Olyroos.

“Feel really good, fitness-wise I feel really well,” he said.

“I’ve been over there training really hard, my conditioning coach over there, doctors and the staff have me in good conditioning.

“It’s pretty amazing being able to train with amazing international players every day and being able to play games with them is a massive leaning experience.”

Football Federation Australia

Jamie Maclaren thanks John Aloisi after December NAB nomination

Striker Jamie Maclaren salutes the Brisbane Roar bench after scoring against Perth in Round 13.

Brisbane Roar striker Jamie Maclaren says the faith of coach John Aloisi and a newfound confidence in front of goal is behind his breakout season in the Hyundai A-League.

The 22-year-old is enjoying a breakout season with Roar, living up to his potential with a string of sensational performances and a stack of goals.

The Melbourne-born flyer – currently in Qatar with the Olyroos as they seek to qualify for the Rio Olympics – has already netted seven times this season and provided three assists for Roar, who has surged to the top of the ladder at the halfway stage of the campaign.

It’s the type of form that will have Ange Postecoglou on notice for a potential Socceroos call-up and why he is the December nominee for the Hyundai A-League’s NAB Young Footballer of the Year award.

Football Federation Australia