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Feb 19, 2012

Paartalu not thinking about Socceroos

Last year's grand final hero Erik Paartalu says he's thinking more about Brisbane's A-League title defence rather than earning Socceroos selection for this month's World Cup qualifier against Saudi Arabia.

The 193cm midfielder, whose 120th minute header in last year's epic grand final is the most significant goal in the club's history, said he wasn't sweating on a call-up to the national team.

"It would nice to get a call-up but I wouldn't be upset if I don't," said Paartalu.

"It's one of those things, it if happens it happens, if it doesn't it doesn't."

Paartalu, meanwhile, had no complaints with Roar coach Ange Postecoglou criticising the players' attitude following their third straight win, 3-2 win over Melbourne Victory on Saturday night.

"We didn't play to our potential," Paartalu said.

"We had patches where we showed some brilliance with our passes but overall we were pretty disappointed with our performance."

While Postecoglou dug in and refused to criticise his troops during the club's record five-game losing streak earlier this year, he was far from happy with their effort against the Victory after leading 3-1.

"That's the sign of a good coach," said Paartalu.

"When we were doing it tough there for a while he was hurting as much as anyone but he remained supportive and positive trying to get us to play our best football.

"Now we're winning and he's still demanding more from us.

"That's how you want it. To be involved in an environment like that where you are pushed every day when you come to work so you never feel comfortable in your surroundings."

Paartalu said it was hard to shake memories of last season and the players were constantly reminded of their amazing unbeaten streak.

"Everyone talks about our form last year but I thought we were even better at start of the year than we were last year," he said.

"We had a little losing patch where we lost a couple (of games) but we're starting to regain the form we had last season and that's a real positive for us."

Brisbane face another tough test this weekend away to Perth as they try and run down front runner Central Coast, who hold a five-point lead atop the competition with one game in hand.

"It's never over until it's mathematically impossible," smiled Paartalu.

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