Didulica commits himself to Australia
SYDNEY, Dec 5 (SW) - Ajax Amsterdam number one goalkeeper Joey Didulica has committed himself to Australia, dismissing media reports he is considering representing Croatia.
On the back of playing an integral part in Ajax Amsterdam’s historic league and cup double last season, Didulica was linked to Croatia, but the 25-year-old has confirmed his allegiance to Frank Farina and the Socceroos.
“Ultimately, you have to play international football with your heart. Nothing else should come into it. As proud as I am of my heritage, my heart is with Australia,” said Didulica.
“I feel I am up to the challenge of playing internationally and if I was selected by Frank Farina in any of his squads, it would be an enormous honour.”
Didulica’s sterling performances in winning the Dutch domestic double and leading a young Ajax side to a remarkable run in the UEFA Champions League have combined to propel his name into the international spotlight.
An injury which kept Didulica out of the Sydney Olympics is responsible for triggering a potential tug-of-war.
“I wanted to play for Australia at the Olympics and was shattered to miss out,” said Didulica.
“Since then international football is not something I’ve thought heaps about because I’ve been so committed to establishing myself at Ajax and helping them in the Champions League. When you do reach a certain level with your club, especially a club like Ajax, it often happens that people begin
linking your name to the national side, and that’s a real buzz”.
“Professionally, playing for a European country can be more convenient because you play so many more high profile games and it allows you to move between clubs, but choosing a country because of that seems a bit ridiculous,” said Didulica.
“You can’t let those issues determine which country you play for. Geelong is where I was born and grew up and if I’m never selected to play for Australia, I’ll still support the Socceroos and hope that we can make it to the World Cup.”