Perth Glory midfielder Kristian Popovic was most impressive in his Asian Champions League debut, repaying the faith of his dad and coach Tony Popovic.
Kristian Popovic is currently known as the son of Perth Glory coach Tony Popovic, but if his Asian Champions League debut is anything to go by it won't be long before the midfielder makes his own mark.
Popovic was handed a surprise start in Tuesday night's 1-0 loss to FC Tokyo in Japan and he didn't let his dad down.
The 18-year-old thrived on the big stage, with his energy and creative spark a major positive to come out of the match for Glory.
Popovic has just one A-League start to his name along with nine appearances off the bench.
But his rate of improvement over the past year suggests he is on track to becoming a star of the future for Glory.
Popovic said he and his dad found it easy to separate work from home life.
"He's been my dad my whole life and I've had this so-called pressure my whole life," Kristian said.
"If he selects me to play, I'm ready and I put my best foot forward.
"When we're at training he'll talk to me about football and when we're at home he'll just talk about family things.
"It's easy to differentiate the two."
Popovic said having his 16-year-old brother Gabriel as part of the Glory squad is also a bonus.
"It's great. Not many players get to play with their younger brothers and especially at such a young age," Kristian said.
"It's a great experience for him and it's good for me to have him in the team as well because it's someone that I know I can always talk to."
Kristian said he loved the experience of taking on FC Tokyo, especially facing up to classy Brazilians Diego Oliveira, Leandro, and Adailton.
"When you think about it, it's crazy," Popovic said. "Not many 18-year-olds get to play against players of this quality.
"I just took the opportunity with both hands and I really enjoyed it."
Glory's unbeaten run in the A-League has stretched to nine games and they'll be aiming to keep that run going when they face the Roar in Brisbane on Saturday.
Juande (groin) is still sidelined, but defender Osama Malik is a chance to play his first game since injuring his hamstring in round four.