Popovic: Juric shouldn't worry about Socceroos
Western Sydney Wanderers coach Tony Popovic has cautioned against the push to install Tomi Juric in the national team.
Western Sydney Wanderers coach Tony Popovic has cautioned against the push to install Tomi Juric in the national team after the exciting young striker lit up Monday night's A-League game with a wonderful individual goal against Central Coast.
Juric showed tremendous poise and skill to score from a sensational overhead kick that put the Wanderers on track for a comfortable 2-0 win at Parramatta Stadium.
It was the 22-year old's first match in five weeks after overcoming a knee injury and he looked sharp and dangerous from the get-go.
His goal was the fourth in six starts.
But while more than happy to acknowledge Juric's ability, Popovic dismissed national team chatter as being premature.
Asked if he felt Juric was on Ange Postecoglou's radar, Popovic replied: "He's got to concentrate on being on my radar at the moment. The other will take care of itself.
"I still think he's got to improve everywhere. He's a young boy and he's matured a lot since he started and he'll mature more and more.
"The five weeks out has shown how much he's matured. He was very professional, very disciplined...he did his rehab properly and looked after his body.
"He probably wouldn't have done that three months ago and come back so quickly after five weeks out.
"That's another step forward for him."
But Popovic conceded the excitement surrounding Juric was justified and noted his game had come on greatly since the start of the season.
The Wanderers coach said: "In terms of his game, it's improved since the start of the year but there's still a long way to go for kid.
"He is a talent but we've got make sure we don't get too carried away."
The win lifts the Wanderers into second spot and there are ominous signs last year's premiers are starting to click into gear.
"In both boxes we were very good. We had to defend desperately at times and at the other we looked dangerous," Popovic said.
"Every time we got in the box you thought something could happen.
"It was a shame we didn't get more goals but it was a very pleasing performance."