Chiedozie Ogbene enjoyed making his senior debut for Ireland in the scoreless draw with Hungary in Budapest, and the four minutes that the Rotherham forward was on the pitch has left him with a real taste for international football.
The former Cork City man was sent on to earn his first cap in the 89th minute of Tuesday night's game, and Ogbene admitted he came on with the intention to cause havoc.
It nearly paid dividends as the 24-year-old almost scored the winner with his first touch of the game as he slammed a left-footed effort into the side-netting.
"There were a few minutes left in the game, so I came on with one goal, one aim, to cause havoc and get at defenders," said Ogbene.
"My teammates made it easier for me, because they were giving me some nice balls in behind. So I really enjoyed myself. It was a good night to come on."
One for the history books ????— Chiedozie Ogbene (@EdozieOgbene) June 8, 2021
A Great honor to make my international debut with @FAIreland. A Proud moment for myself, my family and my friends. Huge Credit to the whole team for showing our solidarity and togetherness throughout ?? https://t.co/EexnSQgLTB
The summer break will allow the Irish players to recharge their batteries ahead of the new season and after enjoying his time away with Ireland over the past ten days, Ogbene said that he will now focus on trying to get back into the squad for the World Cup qualifiers in September.
"This is really a wake-up call, I have got the first taste of it and I am more hungry for more," said Ogbene.
"I am more driven, so I will take pre-season, will be sharp and be as fit as I can, give all I can, these opportunities don't come too easy so I will work twice as hard to be here.
"I really enjoyed it here, and that's what my aim is, I don't want to miss this opportunity and I will do everything I can to be an option for the manager."
Ogbene was not on the pitch at the start of the game when his team-mates were roundly booed for taking a knee ahead of kick-off, and he admitted that he would have loved to have scored to send a response to the home crowd.
"I was obviously disappointed because we all go through different stories and different histories in our lives.
"This is something that black people have been fighting for many years, discrimination and racism. There is no place for it in any sport, any place. It is what it is, we stayed strong and I’m so happy that we as a team took the knee to show solidarity between us all.
"I know early on in the game I was just hoping to come on and get the opportunity to score in front of their fans. Maybe it is the best thing that it didn’t happen because I might have let my emotions get the better of me with any sort of celebration I would have done."
Born in Nigeria, Ogbene moved to Cork back in 2005, and his appearance at the Szusza Ferenc Stadion in Budapest means that he is the first African-born player to represent Ireland at senior level.
The former Limerick and Brentford player said that it was a huge honour to be the first and he hopes that it will inspire others.
"It's truly a blessing. Most importantly, being from the League of Ireland and coming from that tough structure of football, just to showcase if you believe and never give up, what can happen.
"To be titled the first African-born, I'm really blessed and it's a huge honour, something that I want to inspire everyone else to, to follow their dreams."