Australian veteran striker Tim Cahill has given Western Sydney mentor Tony Popovic a ringing endorsement for the Socceroos' coaching role.
Melbourne Victory's Ange Postecoglou is the front runner ahead of the Central Coast coach Graham Arnold.
And while Popovic is considered the outsider among the three, Cahill says he'd be more than confident the 40-year-old former Sydney FC and Crystal Palace assistant coach could do the job.
He cited Popovic's experience in England and his remarkable first year as head coach, where he led the Wanderers to the Premier's Plate and the grand final in their debut season, as proof he was up to the task.
"To be totally honest with you, I've worked with Popa - he's unbelievable," Cahill said.
"He's someone I admire as well as Arnie. Ange I've met a few times and he's done fantastically with the A-League.
"I think Popa's the only one of the three that's actually coached in England at a fantastic club in Crystal Palace.
"But the best thing for me, I know him as person, as a player and also a coach and he gives his heart and soul and you can see what he's done in a year at Western Sydney.
"It's the same for Arnie. He's worked with some big players in the game like Guus Hiddink and others and he's been to a couple of World Cups.
"I know Ange is the favourite as someone who's progressed amazingly through his A-League career and obviously has had a bit of Australian coaching [with the under-20s]."
Cahill, who has been part of the Socceroos under the three previous foreign coaches - Hiddink, Pim Verbeek and Holger Osieck - said he was pleased Football Federation Australia was appointing an Australian to the helm.
The 33-year-old emphasised the need for a long-term plan for the national team and said the development of young talent needed to be a priority.
"I think it's great that we're looking for an Australian and maybe it will be two of them working together. Who knows?" the New York Red Bulls' forward said.
"For Australia, as long as they've got a long-term plan and not a short-term fix, then I'd like to be part of the new journey for the Socceroos.
"But for me, the main objective is making sure you get a coach who's there for the process of bringing these young kids through and looking towards the 2018 World Cup qualifiers as well. It's more about the long-term."