It’s a quantum leap from the NSW Premier League to the doorstep of the Bundesliga, but Joeys striker Noah Botic has all the ingredients to seize the opportunity.
That’s the conviction of Australia U-17s coach Trevor Morgan, reflecting on Botic’s eye-catching switch from Rockdale City Suns to Hoffenheim - the club which helped nurture the gifts of Liverpool’s Roberto Firmino and Newcastle United’s $70 million man Joelinton.
Currently in camp with the Joeys in the UK ahead of clashes against the England, Korea Republic and Brazil, 17-year-old Botic has a two-year contract which will see him feature for Die Kraichgauer’s U-19s this season.
“He deserves the opportunity no question ... the kid has a great attitude and quality across all areas of the game,” said Morgan.
“I am really pleased for him and I’m sure he’ll be fine.
“He’s a good young player and he will learn quickly.
“He’s intelligent, hard-working and a good finisher who’s prepared to work off the ball to make things happen.”
The cousin of Socceroos striker Tomi Juric, Botic had numerous offers from A-League clubs but the plan was always to shift offshore if the right opportunity presented itself.
“It’s a compliment to him to be given the chance to grow in a tough football market,” added Morgan.
“They obviously see something in him as a player of the future - they’re not going to waste their time otherwise.”
Looming as a key figure for Morgan at next month's U-17 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, Botic trialed at Manchester United and had interest from Bayern Munich and Everton before settling on Hoffenheim.
“Noah spent a week with United earlier in the year and scored in a 4-0 win against Newcastle United,” said his manager Nathan Gaynor of the Cove Agency.
“They were quite keen to get him back but we decided Germany was the best place for Noah’s style of football.
“We had several options there but Hoffenheim opened the door to him for a couple of weeks and he impressed in a game for the U-19’s against SpVgg Unterhaching, scoring twice and setting one up in a 4-1 win.
“Hoffenheim has a terrific Academy and they are all about individual development of their players too.
“It’s a little striker factory there at the minute and fingers crossed he does well and will do well for Australia in the years to come.
“They have a high opinion of the boy.”