Australia's second-tier NPL leagues continue to be a vital pipeline for your A-League club.
Playing regular senior football is benefitting these four players who in many instances were in and around A-League club youth set ups.
FTBL has identified these four NPL talents in Victoria who agents should be looking at for next season's A-League.
Starting with a former Victory youth talent.
Position: Centre midfielder
Club: Melbourne Knights
Melbourne Victory fans may remember this name from their youth team.
Big expectations were on him but he didn’t quite make the step up into the first team.
He’s dropped down to the NPL to find his form and we reckon this season he’s showing why he could be a great find.
Duzel is in a professional environment at Somers St, which is helping his game get back on track. Creative, aggressive and with a good physique, he’s finding his groove again with the Knights.
Pic courtesy of @MelbKnights Facebook:
Position: Left centre back
Club Dandenong Thunder
Like Duzel, Memeti had a taste of the A-League, in his case at Melbourne City’s NPL side.
And, impressively for an NPL player who has come through the FFV Development Program, in recent years he’s represented the Young Socceroos in the SBS Cup in Japan and the Joeys.
In fact, national team fans may remember when the Joeys qualified for the AFC Under-16 Championships in 2015, after a 1-0 win over Vietnam in Hanoi.
Memeti’s first-half header the decisive moment of the game.
Memeti could and perhaps should be in an A-League squad next season. And after a strong season in the NPL in 2019, he should be able to hit the ground running.
A beautiful left peg and a good distributor of the ball, Memeti is maturing into a decent footballer after making his senior debut with Thunder in 2018.
Interestingly, Memeti started out as a keeper but has developed into an elegant and powerful defender.
Sign this kid up and see how he goes in a professional environment, that’s our advice to A-League clubs.
Pic courtesy of @dandenongthunder Facebook
Photographer: Smile For Peter
Position: Right centre back
Club Hume City
Another in this list who’s already tasted A-League life, in Wilson’s case at Adelaide United in their NPL and youth sides.
Big, strong, fast and distributes well, Wilson actually scored in Marco Kurz’s first friendly in charge of the Reds in 2017.
He didn’t sign a pro deal with the Reds and moved instead to the highly regarded Victorian NPL at perennial FFA Cup outfit, Hume City.
There, the former West Adelaide NPL star has shown why he would not be out of place back in the professional ranks.
Pic: West Adelaide Facebook @WestAdelaide
Club: Dandenong Thunder
The big Queensland shot-stopper has enjoyed a standout season with Dandy Thunder.
Does everything a keeper should do well: he’s got a physical presence, deals with high balls well and his distribution - such a key part in the modern game - is quality.
He has spent time in an A-League environment with the Newcastle Jets but he's in the right place now to get senior game time and improve his game.
We predict a bright future for this gloveman from the Sunshine State, who’s looked a class above this season.