Adam Taggart is hoping for one particular birthday present this year. Photo: Getty Images
Socceroos striker Adam Taggart may be turning 21 on Monday but for him 23 looms as a much more significant number.
Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou will name his final 23-man World Cup squad on Tuesday (Wednesday AEST).
With various attacking options, the likes of Tim Cahill and Josh Kennedy, Taggart is one of the current 27 with a question mark over his place in the squad.
Boosting his claims for a spot however, is his pure pace - a trait the veteran duo lack.
Taggart will likely be spending his 21st birthday on Monday (Tuesday AEST) playing against Brazilian division two side Parana Clube - the last hit-out before Postecoglou names his squad.
And there's only one present the Newcastle Jets youngster is eyeing.
"I think that everyone knows what I'd like - I'd be over the moon if I make the 23," he said.
"But if not, it's an incredible experience and learning and developing is a massive focal point for me.
"I'm just trying to improve and take the experience on board as it's something that might not come round again."
Should he not make the cut, Taggart says just being part of the camp and the intense, boot-camp like conditions Postecoglou is inflicting on the squad has aided his development.
Awarded the A-League golden boot this year for a standout season with the Jets, Taggart is now hoping to attract an offer abroad.
He says he's drawn inspiration training with his 'idols', the likes of former Everton star Cahill and Crystal Palace skipper Mile Jedinak, who've made the grade in big leagues overseas.
"Being able to train with players you've grown up idolising, players who've played in fantastic leagues and see what they do on and off the field," Taggart said.
"Being able to watch them and try to mould your game on what the best Australians of our era have been doing.
"Timmy Cahill, Mile Jedinak, it's fantastic to be able to keep up the intensity they're implementing."