McGowan has made 18 appearances for the Socceroos since his debut in 2012. The defender, currently plying his trade in China with Henan Jianye, said Neill was his football hero as a child.

Neill played 96 matches for Australia and in two World Cups.

"He was the sort of one who was in my position, playing week-in-week-out in the Premier League, and captain of Australia," he told BBC Sport.

McGowan selected current Socceroo boss Postecoglou as the best manager he has worked under. He said Tom Rogic was one of the best players he has played with.

"Tom Rogic, David Templeton and Wagner Love," McGowan said.

"Neymar is the best player I've played against."

McGowan picked ex-Hearts coach Csaba Laszlo as the worst manager he has played for and said his biggest high in football was the 2012 5-1 Cup final win for Hearts over Hibernian.