Socceroos midfielder Massimo Luongo admits he's still struggling to get over the frustration of his 2018 FIFA World Cup snubbing by Bert van Marwijk.
The Queens Park Rangers playmaker went to Russia on the back of the best season of his career and looked set to start the opening match against France having impressed in three friendly matches under the taciturn Dutch coach.
He was even put up to speak to the media five days before that game against the eventual world champions with a full expectation of being selected.
However, he was forced to watch on helplessly from the sidelines without playing a single minute as the team limped out of the tournament with just one point from their three matches - drawing 1-1 with Denmark and losing to Peru.
A 2-0 defeat by the South American side ended the Socceroos' hopes of qualifying for the last-16 in a match where the team looked devoid of attacking ideas and legs in midfield.
However, van Marwijk still overlooked the former Tottenham Hotspur man, who was fully expecting to play - something that still wrankles with him two months later.
"I thought I was going to make an impact but it didn't happen," Luongo told London's Metro newspaper.
"I still don't know why, it just wasn't meant to be. But for a week after we went out, I wasn't the best person to be around."
Luongo, a self-confessed football nut, said the experience of Russia meant he refused to read about or watch any of the rest of the FIFA World Cup after heading for a holiday with his wife and young son in Greece.
"I switched the phone off for the majority of my time away and it did help clear my head a lot," he said.
"I can never switch off when I go away but I had to this time - I had to forget football."
Luongo will be looking to help QPR chalk up their first win of the new Championship season on Saturday afternoon (Sunday morning AEST) when Sheffield United visit Loftus Road.