Melbourne City’s new signing Jamie Maclaren has detailed the meaning of family in his life and his career as he prepares to make his debut for the club.

Maclaren, who spoke with George Donikian on Evenings on FNR, has spent the last 11 years playing abroad and is relishing the prospect of returning to play at home in Australia.

“For me, family’s so important,” Maclaren said.

“11 years on the road and it’s nice to be able to wake up one morning and say I want to go see my mum and dad.”

Coming from a Scottish family with his father born in Edinburgh, Maclaren played for Hibernian in the Scottish capital, and whilst his family is mainly comprised of fans of their local rivals Hearts of Midlothian, the 25-year-old admitted it was a special experience.

“Obviously Hibernian came in with the contract first, but my family are all Hearts fans so I’m kind of the black sheep going across and signing for the green team of Edinburgh,” Maclaren said.

“When I signed for a team in Edinburgh it was something that touched me in the heart, only because my father obviously was born in Edinburgh and my granny had just passed away a year before that,

“For me it was nice to go back there and see my grandad and get him to watch me play against Rangers, Celtic, play in the derby against Hearts and score against them which is so important,

“It gave me goose bumps playing for that club.”

With his sister an employee at Melbourne Victory, Maclaren is anticipating the opportunity to play in the Melbourne Derby for the first time in what will be a landmark day for his family.

“When it comes to the derby it’s going to be fantastic for the family,” Maclaren said.

“I’ve got cousins and grandparents and stuff like that who can come watch the game, it’s something that we haven’t been able to do for the last 11 years,

“Although there’ll be a bit of banter it’s just great that everyone in my family is involved in football and love it.”

Maclaren is set to debut alongside his new teammates as Warren Joyce’s side take on Adelaide United at AAMI Park on Saturday night.

Nick Hughes