McGowan on the sibling rivalry behind the A-League’s fiercest derby

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As the banter grows between the McGowan brothers in the lead up to the Sydney Derby, Western Sydney Wanderers recruit Dylan McGowan says he may have to ban his brother from his house a few days before the match.

This pre-season saw not one but two McGowan’s arrive in the harbour city, with McGowan joining the Wanderers and older brother Ryan linking up with Sydney FC.

McGowan revealed the tight-knit siblings are relishing the opportunity to now live in such close proximity after five years abroad.

“It was a bit of a strange move. Both of us found out how serious the interest was from the Wanderers and Sydney around the same time,” he said.

“We were both looking at different options and the Sydney clubs ticked the most boxes for both of us.

“We actually live next door, so we still see plenty of each other and play a lot of golf together.”

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The brothers do not have long to wait before they cross the white line in rival colours.

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Their family affair adds further fuel to the fire for the highly anticipated round three Sydney Derby at Bankwest Stadium.

McGowan foresees plenty of banter between the two in the week leading up to the contest where they will line up against each other for the first time.

“I think it will be a normal week, as we don’t often speak too much about football anyway,” he said.

“Off the field we’re all good but it will be interesting to see how we are on the field.

“There’ll be some light-hearted banter and I might have to ban him from coming over for a couple of days beforehand, but other than that we’ll be fine.

“We might even go out for a beer together after the game, who knows?”

The 28-year-old kicked off his professional career alongside Ryan at Scottish side Hearts of Midlothian. But since departing in 2014, their careers have taken vastly different routes throughout Australia, Asia and Europe.

Dylan played an integral role in Adelaide United’s 2015/16 A-League double-winning season before bidding farewell to the City of Churches for Portuguese Primeira Liga club Pacos Ferreira in May 2017.

After finding consistent minutes hard to come by, he spent time out on loan with Korean club Gangwon FC before joining Danish Superliga outfit Vendsyssel.

McGowan was then lured home by coach Markus Babbel and is expected to play a key role within Western Sydney Wanderers’ new-look backline this campaign.

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The defender’s immediate influence in the dressing room has seen him appointed vice-captain for the upcoming season.

Despite his recent ventures not running as smoothly as anticipated, the one-time Socceroo believes he is far better off for the experience it gave him under a number of different coaches.

“Hopefully I can pass on some of my knowledge to the younger boys because we do have a lot of strong academy players coming through,” he said.

“Markus wanted experienced players and leaders to come in and for me to be a part of that and to fulfil that (vice-captain) role in the team is a huge honour.”

Stepping into his leadership position, McGowan said the Red and Black were “shaping up nicely” to improve upon their last three underwhelming seasons and “surprise a few people.”

Featured image credit: Steve Christo

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Chris Curulli
Passionate Sports Media student and all round football obsessive, covering the Western Sydney Wanderers for the 2019/20 season.