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Rogic opens up about World Cup heartbreak

Canberra Times logo Canberra Times 4/06/2014 Chris Dutton
Rogic © Cameron Spencer/Getty Images Rogic

Canberra soccer star Tom Rogic has opened up about his World Cup heartbreak, revealing the devastation of missing out on a "childhood dream" and saying the battle to be fit became too much to handle.

Rogic was cut from the Socceroos squad last night, one of four players left out of Australia's final 23-man squad.

His ongoing battle with a groin injury forced coach Ange Postecoglou's hand and shattered 21-year-old Rogic's dreams of playing for the Socceroos in Brazil.

But the Canberra junior will use his World Cup disappointment to drive him to greater heights in the future.

"Today I experienced one of the toughest days of my life," Rogic posted on Instagram with a photo of him injured.

"I have missed out on a childhood dream, something I have worked so hard for.

"My body hasn't allowed me to take the opportunity I have been given. After giving my all, trying to play through the pain, it all became too much.

"I can honestly say I did everything I could to make my dream come true. The feelings I have now will drive me to become a better person and footballer and hopefully come back stronger than ever."

Socceroo veteran Josh Kennedy also lost his battle with ongoing injury problems. Young goalkeeper Mark Birighitti and another Socceroo veteran (like Kennedy) of the 2006 and 2010 World Cup campaigns, Luke Wilkshire, are the other two players left out.

Postecoglou has had to make the toughest call of his short international coaching career in deciding who to leave out of the final 23-man party.

He has opted for to look to the future rather than concern himself with idealism and sentiment, especially in the case of Rogic, who many believe to be the most promising player of his generation.

The fact that Rogic has been suffering from long running problems for months - he is often reported to be battling osteitis pubis, but this has never been officially confirmed as the cause of his difficulties - makes Rogic's withdrawal a matter of regret rather than surprise.

The 21-year-old started in the practice match against Clube Parana on Monday but put in a lacklustre performance, suffered another knock and was withdrawn at half-time. The writing looked to be on the wall for him then.

For Rogic, it brings to an end an unsatisfactory year. Since his move to Glasgow Celtic his progress has stalled due to a lack of game-time and injury enforced absences.

He has hardly set the A-League alight in his appearances for Melbourne Victory, and while he is not responsible for the hype around him, it is to be hoped that he can try and rebuild his career amid lower expectations.

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