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Australia vs Jordan, Socceroos news, football, 2021, Trent Sainsbury, scores, results, video

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Star Socceroos defender Trent Sainsbury broke down in tears in an emotional interview after the Socceroos record-breaking win over Jordan on Wednesday morning.

Sainsbury made his 50th appearance for the green and gold in the victory, a historic eight-straight win during qualifying for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

Then the veteran centre-half fronted the cameras in a touching interview that proved just how much playing for the Socceroos means to the 29-year-old.

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Sainsbury first praised the ‘unbelievable achievement’ of sweeping Group B of Asian qualifying with a perfect record.

“It’s an unbelievable achievement. It’s such a strong group we got here and the belief is unbelievable,” he said.

“I don’t think people understand just how difficult it is to come away to places like this and play on pitches that are sub-par (which) is putting it nicely.

“To pull off a 1-0 win, OK it’s from a set piece but at the same time, like I said, conditions are ridiculous. It just shows how tough and strong the team is mentally.”

Then Sainsbury opened up on his incredible journey to joining the rare group of Australians with 50 international caps.

“I didn’t realise it until a couple of people were talking about it pre-camp. But it’s always in the back of your mind I guess. It’s a big milestone but I’m just happy for the boys and I’m happy to be part of the camp still,” an emotional Sainsbury said.

“I always go back to my first cap against Belgium, I think about how lucky I was to get one. To get 50, it’s a pretty big thing – but I just love being part of this team, this family, with the boys.

“Just when I, uh – I think I was a good shout to go to the 2014 World Cup. I busted my knee open, I broke my kneecap, and I thought my career was finished. To get to 50, you know, it means a lot.”

Australia's Trent Sainsbury (#20) battling for the ball against Jordan. (Photo by Yasser Al-Zayyat / AFP)
Australia’s Trent Sainsbury (#20) battling for the ball against Jordan. (Photo by Yasser Al-Zayyat / AFP)Source: AFP

Sainsbury had joined Dutch club PEC Zwolle as a 22-year-old in early 2014. Socceroos boss Ange Postecoglou was keeping a close eye on him, with a maiden call-up to the World Cup all-but-assured.

Then, making his debut for his new club, Sainsbury fell badly – onto a sprinkler – and damaged his knee badly. He wouldn’t play for nearly six months, and didn’t even watch the Socceroos’ World Cup games such was his disappointment.

After returning to the field, Sainsbury was again robbed of a Socceroos debut after he sprained his ankle in the opening match of the 2014/15 club season. But finally, in September 2014, he debuted against heavyweights Belgium and never looked back.

He started every game as Australia won the 2015 Asian Cup on home turf, even scoring in the semi-finals and earning man of the match honours in the final. He appeared in all three matches in the 2018 FIFA World Cup, and now plays for KV Kortrijk in Belgium’s first tier.

The star defender and sometimes Socceroo captain choked back tears and held an extended pause as he reflected on his career.

He finished by saying: “Like I said, it’s just great to be amongst it with the boys. Eight wins from eight, I can’t think of anything better. We’ll go on to get more and achieve bigger and better things.”

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