'You learn to be a serial winner': how tough Norwegian challenges have made Gersbach stronger
Alex Gersbach’s road to the Caltex Socceroos squad has not been an easy one.
Since sealing a dream European move to Norwegian giants Rosenborg from Sydney FC back in 2016, Gersbach has struggled to find first-team football in a quality side.
THE ANNOUNCEMENT: Australia's AFC Asian Cup 2019 squad revealed
HOW TO WATCH: All the details on how to follow the Caltex Socceroos' progress in the United Arab Emirates
TIME MACHINE: Amini goes back to the future with Caltex Socceroos
In spite of all that, the 21-year old has maintained a positive attitude, something that has kept him in Graham Arnold’s plans.
“I’ve been away from Australia for three years now, obviously learnt a lot and had a good time at Rosenborg," he told www.socceroos.com.au.
“Winning trophies, you learn to be a serial winner and then there’s the tough times for myself, not playing sometimes, the last year’s been tough being out of the team at Rosenborg and going on loan to France.
“[It’s] not just the good things but the bad things as well and you learn to deal with the bad things.”
“You’ve got to be strong.
“When I’m over in Norway I don’t have the support network I would have here with my family and friends so you’ve just got to learn to deal with it.
"This year I haven’t tried to think about it too much, I’ve gone into training feeling positive even if I’m not playing, just try and be happy and put a smile on my face.”
While he hasn’t commanded a consistent starting spot over his time in Trondheim, Gersbach said a mixture of good and bad times had made him a stronger player.
The left-back, who made his Hyundai A-League debut under Arnold while still in high school, said the importance of the Hyundai A-League in developing player was highlighted by the 19 squad members who have graced the domestic competition at some stage in their careers.
“When you actually look at the Socceroos squad almost every player has played in the A-League at some stage and most of them started in the A-League and have moved on, stayed there or have come back so I think the A-League is very important for the Socceroos.”
Adversity breeds success as they say and Gersbach is ready to grasp it with both hands.
“[I’m] really excited and proud and really looking forward to getting to the UAE and getting started,” he said.
“It’s not easy to come by a Socceroos cap so every chance you get you relish the opportunity.”