Oliver Bozanic targets European football with new club Hearts

Oliver Bozanic trains with Hearts for the first time. Pic: SNS
Oliver Bozanic trains with Hearts for the first time. Pic: SNS
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Oliver Bozanic is targeting European qualification and a return to the Australia squad after joining Hearts. The midfielder wants a place in the Europa League and a cup run after signing a two-year contract.

Bozanic left Melbourne City at the end of last season and is now back in Europe, where he played as a teenager with Reading. One of ten new signings by Hearts manager Craig Levein, he hopes to use his energy and dynamism to help the Edinburgh club improve on last year’s sixth place league finish.

“It’s all about the team for me. For us to qualify for Europe would be amazing, and also to have a good cup run,” said the 29-year-old. “Personally, I want to have a fantastic season and prove myself in this league. To play in Europe would be another goal I’d love to achieve.

“If you’re playing in Europe, it’s a massive advantage for the national team. I’ve still got one eye on that as well, but right now my main objective is to come here and perform and play well to help the club.

“I have just had a brief conversation with the manager so it’s still very early. The aim is for me to come in, have a big impact on the club and to play in that midfield role where I can break things up – but also get forward and create chances.”

Bozanic played twice for Australia at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil and holds seven full caps for his country. “It was an amazing experience in Brazil, to play against the Netherlands and Spain was a massive achievement for myself in terms of my national team career,” he said.

“I am still hungry for more success and if this brings about more opportunities with the national team I would love to take them. It’s a little bittersweet watching them this year because I would obviously love to be there at the World Cup. At the same time, I am very happy for the players and I am desperate for our country to succeed there.”