He currently plays for the Australia national football team, where he is the all-time top goal scorer. Prior to joining Shanghai, he played for Millwall, Everton and the New York Red Bulls. Cahill plays as an attacking midfielder, but has also played as a forward on several occasions. A box-to-box midfielder, Cahill has become recognised for "his aggressive and powerful approach and his ability to head the ball in the penalty area."
Cahill has become one of the highest profile footballers in the Asian Football Confederation (AFC), earning over 90 caps and scoring 47 goals for his country. He was the first Australian to score at a FIFA World Cup. Cahill has scored in three World Cups (2006, 2010, 2014) and has scored the most goals by any Australian in the World Cup with five goals. In 2007 he became the first Australian player to score at an AFC Asian Cup. Cahill is known for his adept heading ability and high vertical leap, having scored many of his goals with his head.