Mark Schwarzer says last summer’s move to Fulham has revived his confidence and might see him extend his playing career.
The Australian goalkeeper, written off as past it by some pundits towards the end of his Middlesbrough career, has excelled during his first season at Craven Cottage and his performances were one of the main reasons why Fulham finished the season in seventh place and secured a European place.
Schwarzer says the desire of Roy Hodgson and Mike Kelly to bring him to Fulham did a lot to restore his belief.
When you know a club desperately wants you and they have a lot of faith in you, it automatically gives you a lot more confidence. I have that at Fulham. I didn’t really have that at the end with Middlesbrough.
For me it was important to move on and have that feeling of being wanted and appreciated. When I left Middlesbrough a lot of people doubted whether I was still up for the task of playing the Premier League or thought that I was past my use by date. To prove those critics wrong is very satisfying.
Schwarzer hasn’t ruled out the idea of continuing to represent his country after the World Cup in South Africa next year after the Socceroos reached the tournament thanks to a goalless draw with Qatar yesterday.
I think my grand plan is to get to the World Cup and have a successful World Cup and then possibly look to move on after that. Whether that means straight away, whether I retire from the national team or I look beyond that, I’m not really sure yet.
There’s a slight possibility I might consider playing on for Asian Cup in 2011, but there’s a lot of things that could come into play between now and then.
He did concede playing in the 2014 World Cup would prove beyond him, though.
I think that’s a little beyond me now, to play at 41 is way, way too far ahead and I don’t envisage it.
Fulham have offered Schwarzer an extension to his current contract, which still has a year to run, and with the Australian happy in London, we hope he keeps goal for the Whites for a long time to come.