Melbourne City defender Ivan Franjic believes the consistency that has eluded his new club so far this A-League campaign is finally within reach.
Franjic put months of injury frustration behind him on Friday night when he came off the bench in the 58th minute of City's 1-1 draw with ladder leaders Brisbane.
The sight of the Socceroos defender out on the pitch was a welcome one for coach John van 't Schip, who has also had to deal with the injury-enforced absences of Robert Koren, Patrick Kisnorbo, Michael Zullo and Aaron Hughes in a stuttering campaign that has them seventh on the ladder after seven rounds.
"You always want to be out there trying to help," Franjic said after his return from a four-month break with a quad injury.
"Obviously we need to get some consistency behind our performances but now we've got a few key players coming back over the next few weeks.
"There's going to be competition for places, which is very important."
Franjic is keen to start on the pitch when City host Perth Glory on Friday night but admits he is still "a good six weeks away" from regaining 100 per cent fitness after his wretched run with injury.
Franjic's last competitive match was for the Socceroos in their 2-1 World Cup qualifier win against Kyrgyzstan in June, which followed on the heels of his bitter split from Russian club Torpedo Moscow.
The 28-year-old is keen to work his way back into Socceroos' calculations, while helping City climb up the A-League ladder.
"My main focus now is playing for Melbourne City and trying to get that run of games so I can get my body back to where it was a couple of years ago," he said.
"I'll have to start performing week in and week out in the A-League then it's up to the (Socceroos') boss if he thinks I'm good enough to get back in but I'll work hard and do everything right.
"I'll keep performing to the best of my ability and hopefully it's enough to get me back in."