His second coming complete, long-term Socceroos coach Graham Arnold has declared himself ready to take the national team to new heights at next year's Asian Cup and the 2022 World Cup.
Arnold's long-expected unveiling was met with a tangible sense of expectation befitting a coach with much to prove on the world stage and a man whose new-found public composure will be tested during Asia's unforgiving qualifying path.
The soon to be ex-Sydney FC coach is a polarising figure and far from an all-round popular choice to take over from Dutchman Bert van Marwijk after the World Cup in Russia this June.
But while he may lack the backing of the masses, the 54-year-old's decorated A-League credentials, tactical pedigree and history with many of the current Socceroos crop earned him high praise from FFA chief executive David Gallop as "top of the pile".
Arnold, the local favourite thanks to his record-breaking success with the title-winning Sky Blues, has been given a four-year contract until the end of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
On Thursday he informed his Sydney FC players he'll leave at the end of the A-League season in May, a decision he admitted was "extremely difficult" given it meant rejecting a significant pay rise to stay.
"My commitment to Sydney FC is 110 per cent to the end of this season," Arnold said in Sydney.
"It (the Socceroos job) is obviously a tough job but one I'm really excited and look forward to."
That job officially starts on July 1 but kicks off at Russia 2018 as an observer when short-term boss van Marwijk rules the roost.
Arnold will then likely get a friendly, rumoured to be planned for the MCG in October, as preparation for his first major task - January's Asian Cup defence in the United Arab Emirates.
The 54-year-old Arnold was the first to say he'd learnt from his mistakes in his first incarnation as Socceroos coach nearly a decade ago, taking in 2007's failed Asian Cup.
"Obviously I've made plenty, but I'm a person who learns," he said.
"I've been heavily involved with the Socceroos for a long, long time ... so I know what the job is about.
"It's not an easy job but I know I'll do a great job this time and I feel definitely that I'm ready."
Arnold was loath to elaborate on the direction of his squad-in-waiting for fear of treading on van Marwijk's toes.
But his zest for Australian talent was a hat-tip to current Socceroos including Mat Ryan, Trent Sainsbury, Danny Vukovic, Alex Gersbach, Matthew Jurman and Tom Rogic, all who have played under him at Central Coast or Sydney in recent years.
"I've worked with a lot of these players before and I really believe they're at the ripe age for the next World Cup, and I see a lot of talent coming through," Arnold said.
"Ange did a fantastic job winning the Asian Cup here at home.
"I know it will be more difficult away from home but we go there expecting to win."
Arnold said the specifics of backroom staff had not yet been decided, though it's rumoured highly-respected Sky Blues conditioning coach Andrew Clark and video analyst Doug Kors would follow him into the national set-up.