City star chasing national honours
FOOTBALL: Bruno Fornaroli wants to become an Australian citizen and play for the Socceroos.
But first and foremost the gun Melbourne City striker is hellbent on getting back on to the pitch with plenty of time to spare before his side's finals campaign.
Having fallen in love with Melbourne, Uruguayan Fornaroli is already looking into getting, first, a permanent visa and then citizenship for himself, his wife and two young children.
The 30-year-old arrived in Australia in August 2015, so would likely have to wait until midway through 2020 to get citizenship but the fan favourite has his club on the case exploring any opportunity there might be to fast-track the process.
And if and when that time comes around, Fornaroli would be eligible to play for the Socceroos as he has never been capped by Uruguay.
Depending on when the 2022 World Cup is held Fornaroli would be either 34 or 35, so it is not out of the realms of possibility that the man who in 2015-16 scored an A-League record 25 goals in a season could play a role in helping his adopted country make it to Qatar.
"If the opportunity comes I want to take it,” Fornaroli said. "This country opened the door to me and my family and we are very grateful.
"It's a great national team. I would be very happy to play for Australia one day if they want me.”
Fornaroli required surgery to repair a break in his ankle suffered in the FFA Cup's Round of 16 in August.
He had been pegged for a late January, early February return, but as yet cannot pinpoint an exact comeback date.
With the City future of on-loan striker Ross McCormack's still up in the air, Fornaroli's injury status is becoming all the more pertinent. But he insists he will be back well before April's start to the playoffs.
"I feel good, happy,” he said.
"At the start I said this date and that date, but then when I go to the pitch and it feel not right, I try to not say the date now.
"I will come back only when I can give 100 per cent for the team.
"I hope that will be soon. I don't know exactly when, but I hope soon.
"It's hard too because I might come back in three or four weeks, then there's only about 10 games left (with finals) and then it's another six months to wait to play.
"So sometimes I feel bad about that. But that is football.”