This year has been a whirlwind of glory for Robbie Kruse but the 25-year-old says he cannot afford to stop and smell the roses.
It started when he scored a brace on his starting debut for German powerhouses Bayer Leverkusen and the attacker then went on to play in a UEFA Champions League campaign before emerging as an Australian attacking weapon in World Cup qualifiers.
"I haven't had too much time to really reflect on anything," Kruse said in Sydney on Sunday ahead of this week's friendly against Costa Rica.
"Obviously we had the World Cup qualifiers and it was such a surreal feeling to qualify.
"Then I jumped straight back into Bayer.
"I'm thrilled with where I'm at and I'm thrilled with the path that I have taken, I have progressed as a footballer and off the pitch as well."
Brisbane-born Kruse last week won the Professional Footballers' Australia Footballer of the Year Award, adding to the Harry Kewell Medal (for the best under-23 player) that he won two years ago.
He becomes the first player ever to win both gongs.
"I have been feeling really good, I have felt pretty happy with my start at Bayer and hopefully I can translate that into the national team," Kruse said.
"It's obviously difficult when you are coming in, with different philosophies of the coaches and you're playing different players, but I'm sure we're all experienced enough to adjust."
Kruse will play a key role under new Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou, starting with Tuesday night's friendly against Costa Rica.
"It's a friendly but even the boss said he doesn't like losing and I'm sure none of the players do," he said.
"We want to win and play a nice brand of football.
"You see the way (Melbourne) Victory and Brisbane have played under Ange, it has been very attractive.
"So if we can play similar to that and get some victories and get some goals, hopefully the fans will appreciate that."
|Coach: A. Postecoglou|
for R. Williams 48'
for M. Leckie 52'
for M. Bresciano 62'
for D. Vidošić 62'
for M. Milligan 77'
for R. Kruse 77'
|Strootman delighted with return to Roma starting XI|
|Laporte dismisses Manchester City rumours|
|Ranieri has silenced critics, says Kisnorbo|
|Van Gaal: I am one of the best managers in the world|
|Santa Cruz: Guardiola will bring better football to City|
|Guardiola always a bit anxious - Kahn|
|Kisnorbo: No one will forget Leicester´s fairytale run to Premier League glory|
|Rodgers backs Klopp´s handling of Sturridge|
|Wright: No one would have touched Kante and Co.|
|Smalling: Captaining United an honour|
|No surprises in Mexico´s 40-man Copa squad|
|Juanfran: We are a team of details|
|Stepanenko: My friendship with Yarmolenko is over|
|Leicester fan Martinez: I am glad it did not happen in Germany|
|Schwarzer has shown age is just a number - Kisnorbo|
|Mangala: City want to make history in Champions League|
|Lineker struggling to believe Leicester success|
|Carrick: Top four not gone yet|
|De Gea named United´s player of the year|
|Dundee 2 Dundee United 1: Visitors relegated|
|King delighted to crown Leicester rise with title|
|Ranieri: I knew I would win a title eventually!|
|Soccer world reacts to Leicester´s remarkable Premier League title|
|Serie A Review: Strootman starts as Roma fight back again|
|Leicester success a ´good omen´ for Selby|
|Kane: Chelsea celebrated like they won title|
|Thumping Man City, edging Tottenham and five matches that won Leicester the Premier League|
|Vardy marvels at Leicester´s finest hour|
|Ranieri called me to say thanks, reveals Hiddink|
|Leicester did the impossible - Morgan|
|Terry: Leicester title triumph gives hope to smaller sides|
|Pochettino proud as Spurs fall short|
|Savage: Leicester title a key moment in Premier League history|
|Football world reacts to Leicester´s remarkable Premier League title|
|Leicester deserve Premier League title - Hazard|
|Leicester players celebrate Premier League title triumph in style|
|From Tinkerman to champion: Ranieri writes the greatest story ever told|
|Champions Leicester worthy of a film - Heskey|
|The greatest upset: Champions Leicester break new ground for sporting underdogs|
|Chelsea 2 Tottenham 2: Leicester champions as Spurs collapse at Stamford Bridge|
|Leicester crowned Premier League champions|
|Werder Bremen 6 Stuttgart 2: Crushing win lights up survival fight|
|Malaga 3 Levante 1: Late collapse all but relegates Rubi´s men|
|Neuer cites home crowd as advantage for Atleti clash|
|Icardi surprised by Argentina selection|
|Ribery fit to face Atletico in Champions League semi-final|
|FIFA extends Sakho ban worldwide|
|Torres and Atletico ready for war at Bayern|
|Football League Review: Burnley earn promotion back to the Premier League|
|Simeone pledges to chase victory at Allianz Arena|
|´Nothing in life is certain´ - Handanovic on Inter future|
|CAS order FIFA to reconsider Gibraltar membership|
|Trapattoni: I love Simeone and Atletico´s style|
|Balotelli is a changed man, says Galliani|
|Real Madrid job is about politics - Pellegrini|
|De Laurentiis wants Sarri at Napoli long term|
|Yarmolenko will not go to Everton or Stoke - Dynamo president|
|Suarez a difference maker - Stoichkov|
|Drinkwater to face no further action from FA|
|Albrighton: Leicester players will watch Chelsea v Tottenham together|
|More to Manchester City than Aguero - Casemiro|
|Boban: Maldini can save Milan|
|Real Madrid v Manchester City: Pellegrini eyes away goal as Zidane hopes for Ronaldo|
|Pellegrini doubts longevity of Leicester´s credentials|
|Portugal unconcerned by Ronaldo fitness|
|Ribery tells Guardiola to play him against Atletico|
|Vardy wins FWA Player of the Year award|
|Hiddink: Title pressure could get to Tottenham|
|Messi never cheats, insists Xavi|
|Dortmund tell Bayern Hummels fee is non-negotiable|
|Welbeck a different animal again - Wenger|
|Xavi: Real Madrid played like a small team in Clasico|
|Bayern can win Champions League - Santa Cruz|
|Reina backs Atletico to win the double|
|Perth Glory lure Herd to A-League|
|England can´t afford Australia loss - Kewell|
|Stankovic: Simeone will coach Inter, but not now|
|I had to rotate squad - Pellegrini|
|Candreva backs Inzaghi for Lazio job|
|I can make fans forget my bad season – Hazard|
|MLS Review: Cole sees red in Galaxy stalemate, Valeri stunner lifts Timbers|
|Pochettino: Deal announcement can convince Tottenham stars to stay|
|Hiddink: Chelsea can´t replace Terry|
|Pulisic, Morris picked by Klinsmann in initial Copa squad|
|Wenger anticipated worse from protests|
|Kante set to have stand named after him|
|Furious Mancini slams Inter´s ´worst ever´ first half against Lazio|
|Serie A Review: Champions League places locked, Milan play out six-goal thriller|
|La Liga Review: Villarreal secure Champions League return|
|Lazio 2 Inter 0: Champions League race comes to a Klose|
|Koeman delivers Pelle warning|
|Morata wants to stay at Juventus, claims Marotta|
|Pellegrini disappointed with City defending in defeat|
|Iheanacho: City will bounce back from Saints defeat|
|´On fire´ Mane salutes Southampton show|
|Angers 0 Marseille 1: Batshuayi strike secures Ligue 1 status|
|Southampton 4 Manchester City 2: Mane hat-trick blows top-four race open|
|Van Gaal calls for video referees after Drinkwater decision|
|Schmeichel: I don´t care how we win it|
|Montella open to Italy role|
|Brocchi pleased with Milan fightback|
|Van Gaal defends ´human´ Fellaini over Huth elbow clash|
|Ronaldo wants Zidane to stay at Madrid|
|Ranieri to miss decisive Tottenham clash|
|Rooney disappointed after Leicester draw dents top-four hopes|
|Bayern Munich v Atletico Madrid: Hosts seek to vent Bundesliga frustration|
|Leicester captain Morgan hails battling Old Trafford point|
|AC Milan 3-3 Frosinone: Menez penalty denies strugglers|
|Klopp not concerned by Sturridge behaviour|
|Manchester United 1 Leicester City 1: Captain Morgan on target as Foxes edge closer to glory|
|Allofs: We do not have the same weapons as Bayern|
|Guidolin coy on Swansea future|
|Allegri happy with win after title celebrations|
|Umtiti flattered by Tottenham interest|
|Klopp frustrated by lacklustre Liverpool|
|Hannover mourn Feierabend|
|Godin, Carrasco fit for Bayern clash|
|Swansea City 3 Liverpool 1: Ayew double punishes wasteful visitors|
|Dybala claims Messi, Ronaldo would score less in Italy|
|Juventus 2 Carpi 0: Hernanes, Zaza on target as champions march on|
|Ronaldo back in training for Madrid|
|Barcelona confirm Bravo calf injury|
|Aulas brands Ligue 1 ´championship of Qatar´|
|Leicester City at Manchester United: Aiming for Hollywood ending to title push|
|I can start for England at Euro 2016 - Sturridge|
|Dybala never doubted Juventus|
|Aguero celebrates brother´s Independiente debut|
|Sturridge rounds on critics, plays down Klopp rift|
|Adelaide United 3 Western Sydney Wanderers 1: Reds seal maiden A-League title|
|Eriksson: Simeone is an example to follow|
|´Where am I?´ - Lovren reveals travel struggles|
|´If I have to leave Bayern, then I will´ - Benatia|
|Walker ´over the moon´ after Pochettino agrees new deal|
|MLS Review: Villa leads City, Impact held|
|We´d probably be relegated without Defoe – Allardyce|
|Koeman: Leicester will do well in Champions League|
|Ronaldo needs rest or could miss Euros - doctor|
|United shaped me as a player - Schlupp|
|Sanchez, Vidal lead Chile´s Copa squad|
|Arsenal´s patience paid off - Cech|
|I will know Madrid´s plans - Pellegrini|
|Granada 3 Las Palmas 2: Superb comeback boosts hosts´ survival hopes|
|Martinez pleased with impact of new faces|
|Ligue 1 Review: Lyon, Monaco continue fight for second|
|Serie A Review: Fiorentina frustrated, Torino hit five|
|Barca keeper Bravo set for tests on calf strain|