Davutovic: The 17 A-League and Westfield W-League players following in their father's footsteps

Fatherly inspiration continues in Australian football with at least 17 father-son – and father-daughter – combinations set to feature in this season’s A-League and Westfield W-League competitions.

Melbourne City captain Scott Jamieson’s connections trace right back to 1977, when the National Soccer League kicked off and dad Alex lined up for Sydney Olympic before joining Parramatta Eagles, playing 83 games in five seasons, including a return to Scotland in between.

In total, 50 such combinations have taken the field and at least 17 (14 male and three female) whose dads played NSL and even A-League are set to feature this season.

That number will almost certainly expand with famous names such as Costanzo, Cassio, Markovski and Kim to reappear in the top tier of Australian football.

Alex Jamieson concedes junior has surpassed him – in all but one area.

“The number of goals I scored in the NSL (four) compared to Scott (two in the A-League), I’m beating him. It’s the only thing I’ve got on him in soccer,” Alex Jamieson quips.

“Scott’s a completely different type of player to me, anyone who can last 250 games in any league deserves credit. If he only played one game I’d be immensely proud - and a few more to come. And more so able to represent his country.

“He learnt a lot when he went to Bolton age 15. He doesn’t leave anything off the field, a lot of people like that, some don’t.”

Though born four years after dad’s last NSL game for Raul Blanco’s Parramatta Eagles in 1984, Jamieson revealed the profound impact the former Ipswich Town reserves and Scotland Schoolboys international had on him.

“Massive influence. We used to go to park and train, huge for my upbringing. He never pushy, but he was critical, he’d get in the car and gave me an opinion,” City’s captain says.

“You see lots of parents influencing, standing next to coaches – he never like that. He’d stand at the furthest corner of the pitch, stood from afar and supported. But was also my biggest critic - along with myself.

“Never got to see him play, but I heard he was decent. (Legendary Fairfax football columnist, the late) Mike Cockerill showed me some old pics of him. I still get stopped by a lot of Greek boys (Sydney Olympic), talking about the NSL days.”

Alex Jamieson with NSL club Parramatta Eagles in 2004
Alex Jamieson with NSL club Parramatta Eagles in 2004

NSL TO A-LEAGUE AND W-LEAGUE CONNECTION

The hidden story of Australia’s football dynasty has not been told as well as other sports, but the influence is no less profound.

A decent cohort of the A-League’s emerging brigade have rich football connections, with two 2019/20 season debutants emanating from strong football stock.

Ivan Duzel, the father of Western United’s Joeys midfielder Luke Duzel, played 63 games for Melbourne Knights from 1989-97, Melbourne City’s Raphael Borges Rodrigues’ dad Cristiano played 49 games for Adelaide United between 2008-10, while Maki Petratos joined his siblings, teammate Kosta, fellow Newcastle Jets player, sister Panagiota and Socceroos Dimi in following dad’s footsteps into the top tier of Australian football. Angelo Petratos played 43 games for Olympic and Wollongong City between 1993-98.

Melbourne Victory midfielder Jay Barnett’s dad Michael playing 10 games for West Adelaide (1989/90) while Macarthur FC keeper Nicholas Suman’s father played four times for Blacktown Citty in 1989/90.

Dom Costanzo (Adelaide United, son of ex Adelaide City, Marconi and United defender Angelo), Danny Kim (Brisbane Roar, son of ex Marconi and South Korea 1994 World Cup defender Kim Pan-Keun) and Melbourne City duo Bernardo Oliveira (dad Cassio played for Adelaide United) and Emin Durakovic (dad Mehmet was a South Melbourne and Socceroos great) are all knocking on the door of their respective senior A-League teams, while 18-year-old Maja Markovski – the daughter of ex Sunshine George Cross player Tom Markovski and niece of former Socceroo John Markovski – has signed for Victory.

Many more will feature this season.

Newcastle Jets’ Nigel Boogaard’s (dad Mike played 56 games for KB United in 1983-86), Central Coast’s Oliver Bozanic (Vic Bozanic, 205 games, 1878-87), Sydney FC’s Luke Brattan (Gary Brattan, 85 games for Heidelberg United, 1990-94), Brisbane Roar’s Corey Brown (Rod Brown 346 games, 1983-98), Western United’s Steven Lustica (father Bernie played nine games for Canberra City in 1978/79), Sydney FC’s Paulo Retre (dad Carlos made 22 appearances for Footscray, 1989-94), while Steven Ugarkovic’s dad John played twice for Sydney United in 1984.

Ugarkovic; Boogaard
Newcastle Jets players Steven Ugarkovic and Nigel Boogaard

City striker and 2019/20 golden boot winner Jamie Maclaren didn’t get to see dad Don play during an illustrious 241-game career for Sunshine George Cross and Canberra City from 1979-89, but he’s heard about it.

And the Jamieson's round out City’s profound father-son influence.

“I came at the very start, midway through very first year in 1977, the Phillips League it was called then, just finished the English season and got put on the transfer list,” Alex says.

“In hindsight it was a great move. My wife (Gillian) and family love it here.

“We are proud watching Scott play. It would be nice to see him win something, he’s missed a few (chances).”

Sydney FC’s Angelique Hristodoulou has plenty of time to catch dad Eric, a Sydney Olympic, Sydney United and Marconi midfielder who played 182 NSL games and possessed a venomous long-range strike.

Kahlia Hogg (46 games for Adelaide United) is another whose dad Steve played in the first NSL season, playing 182 games from 1977-86.

L-R: 3 generations of Jamieson's. Alex Jamieson, Cooper Jamieson and Scott Jamieson
L-R: 3 generations of Jamieson's. Alex Jamieson, Cooper Jamieson and Scott Jamieson