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Australian Football: Arnold has faith in Fornaroli

Socceroos boss Graham Arnold says Bruno Fornaroli's winning mentality will be crucial in the huge World Cup qualifiers against against Japan and Saudi Arabia.

Australia are priced at 500/1 to win the World Cup but need to win both games to guarantee their place in the finals, or face a play-off.

Fornaroli gets the nod

Arnold has made a number of changes to his extended squad for the double-header and Perth Glory striker Fornaroli is one of five uncapped players named in the 27.

Born in Uruguay, the 34-year-old is now an Australian citizen and is eligible for selection. The striker has scored goals for fun in the A-League and Arnold believes he deserves his chance.

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Arnold will be without forwards Adam Taggart and Jamie Maclaren and says Fornaroli is a great replacement to step in.

"If you look at what Bruno Fornaroli's done for Australian football as a foreigner over the last, however long he's been her, seven-eight years, he's always been consistently one of the best strikers in the league," Arnold said.

"With his goalscoring ratio of a goal every two games, he brings great quality but on top of that, he brings a South American mentality and that is fight 'til you drop. He brings experience that because of that, these two games will not affect him at all."

Starlets to step up

In-form Melbourne Victory forward Nicholas D'Agostino also gets his first call along with Nathaniel Atkinson, Gianni Stensness and Central Coast defender Kye Rowles.

"I have no issues at all with any of those kids stepping up because I know they'll bring great energy and what they will bring is aggression and that's what I expect for these two games," Arnold added.

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