Glory before country

Perth Glory Captain Jacob Burns said national team selection will not distract the club’s Socceroos aspirants as they focus their attention on achieving Hyundai A-League success this season.

Perth Glory Captain Jacob Burns said national team selection will not distract the club-s Socceroos aspirants as they focus their attention on achieving Hyundai A-League success this season.

Burns, along with Mile Sterjovski and Chris Coyne, all played important roles in Australia-s qualification for the 2010 World Cup as overseas based players, however the Glory skipper is adamant their decision to come home has been the right one for club and country.

“There is always going to be the speculation that we have come home too early, and will it affect our national team spots. My focus is on Perth Glory, being in good form and the team doing well, that will place enough pressure on the selectors to put us in there (the squad for South Africa) and we-re all going to benefit from that,” Burns said.

The midfielder will lead out Perth in their opening round encounter against Adelaide at Hindmarsh Stadium after overcoming a hamstring strain and is determined to secure a solid start for his new club.

It will be the first time Burns has suited up in a domestic match in Australia since making a move to English Premier League side Leeds United nine years ago he said he has a good understanding of what he-ll face from the opening whistle.

“There are a few guys (at Adelaide) who are still around from the time I played in Oz and I know the coach well. They-re a well drilled side and to go as far as they did in the Asian Champions League is a credit to the squad they-ve put together, so we are by no means going there thinking it is going to be easy.

“It has been a long pre-season for most of the lads. Some of us who have come in late following European seasons have been here for a month and a half now and everyone is fresh and bright.

“We've lost a couple of guys with injuries but in general the mood is good and we'll be looking for all the points in Adelaide.”

“Being a short season we can-t afford to slip up anywhere so we want to get off to a good start and will be doing everything in our power to do that.”