Socceroos refugees want to inspire at cup

For the Socceroos' trio of South Sudanese refugees, the World Cup is more than football.

Awer Mabil, Thomas Deng and Garang Kuol want to inspire and provide hope, not just in Australia but around the globe.

The trio are bonded by heritage: all born to South Sudanese families who fled their homeland and settled in Australia.

And all are acutely aware that wearing the Socceroos jersey carries far greater significance than just playing football.

"I just want to prove to kids, especially South Sudanese kids around the world, that you can make something of yourself in this world," Kuol told reporters in Doha.

Kuol was born in Egypt before his South Sudanese family migrated to Australia as refugees a dozen years ago, when he was aged six.

Deng was born in Nairobi, Kenya, to South Sudanese parents who also migrated to Australia as refugees when he was six.

"For us, it drives us, it gives us motivation to do better," the 25-year-old Deng said.

"Especially having so many young children that are looking up at us ... as role models.

"We are just happy to be in this position to give them a pathway.

"And to show them that your dreams are possible, as long as you work hard for them. So just be positive."

Mabil was born in a refugee camp in Kakuma, Kenya, to South Sudanese parents who migrated to Australia when he was 10-years-old.

"We are basically trying to open up pathways for not just Australian kids but hopefully kids from our communities," the 27-year-old said.

"Especially because sometimes it's easy to go down the wrong path.

"But when they can see people from their community representing such a country - it's something that as a kid I wanted to see someone from our community show me that way.

"So for us, it's only motivation to try and push higher.

"For sure there will be kids out there that are better than us, we just want to show them the way.

"That is our motivation to try and show them and be the leaders in everything that we do."

Mabil said a focus on the trio's heritage ahead of the World Cup in Qatar was a bonus, not a burden.

"That is what comes with it, we accept that," he said.

"Because if there were no questions ... nobody would know our stories. "We are proud to tell our stories, no matter who asks the questions.

"We want to be as honest as possible ... because that is the way we have been raised and the way we will continue to do our things."

Deng concurred.

"It's good for us to speak and to answer questions so Australia can know our stories and learn from our culture and what we are about," he said.

A fourth member of the Socceroos squad in Qatar, Milos Degenek, also comes from a refugee family.

Degenek was born in Knin, Croatia, and his Serbian family fled to Belgrade when he was 18-months-old, where they lived as refugees during the Kosovo War.

Degenek and his family migrated as refugees to Australia when he was seven-years-old.