Hearts in Spain: Cammy Devlin reveals World Cup dream and how Tynecastle club can help him reach Qatar

Cammy Devlin admits he is desperate play for Australia at the World Cup after watching Hearts mates Nathaniel Atkinson and Kye Rowles help the Socceroos reach Qatar.

Wednesday, 29th June 2022, 10:30 pm

The diminutive midfielder remains uncapped after injury prevented any call-up for the World Cup play-offs earlier this month. Atkinson and Rowles both featured as Australia beat United Arab Emirates and then Peru to secure their place in the finals this winter.

Devlin, 24, spoke at Hearts’ pre-season training base in southern Spain to outline his ambitions for the next six months, stressing that consistent displays in Scotland can only help his international aspirations.

“I don't really need much of an incentive to work hard and do my best, but if you're every going to get one it's to put yourself in the frame for the World Cup,” he said. “Being out for two and a half months with my hamstring didn't help me before those play-offs.

“I obviously want to be there, that's the dream. Every kid wants to play for their country and go to a World Cup. It's kind of crazy. If I start the season well then hopefully I'll be in with a chance. The only way I'll make that possible is if I do well for Hearts.

"I'm uncapped but I believe in myself. If you count yourself out then it's never going to happen. I always work hard and believe in myself. That way you give yourself every chance. I won't look too far ahead because that might hinder how I perform. I just focus week to week on how I play for Hearts and fingers crossed that can come.”

Regular European outings with Hearts this season would further enhance his claim. “Being in Europe is unreal. I didn't even think of it when I came here. I just thought how unreal it was to come and play in Scotland,” said Devlin.

“Now we have a chance to be in the Europa League. Me and the Aussie boys have spoken about just how wild that is for us. When it's tough in pre-season like this, it just gives you that little bit more incentive with big games coming up. If you're playing European games, I think that might help your international cause a bit.”

Cammy Devlin wants a place in Australia's World Cup squad

Devlin spent the close season in his homeland with family and friends and watched both of Australia’s play-off ties – the second ending with a dramatic penalty shootout victory over Peru.

“Of course I watched. I wanted to be there but to see Australia do so well and get through in such tough conditions was great. I have a lot of mates in that team, obviously two Hearts players who were great.

“Natty was unreal until he threw the towel in and didn't want to take a penalty! Kye got man of the match which is outstanding. It's a great squad and I'm really happy for everyone. To be in another World Cup, the fifth in a row for Australia, is fantastic.”

Devlin is now waiting to welcome Atkinson and recent signing Rowles to Hearts after their extended summer break. He joked that Rowles’ moustache might draw some attention from new team-mates. “I think he might cop it when he comes over but I'll let him find that out for himself,” laughed the midfielder.

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