The 17-year-old central midfielder, who made a late guest appearance in the 3-3 draw against FC Sion, has already established himself well at youth level in Switzerland and currently only has eyes for the country of his birth and upbringing.
Swiss luck for Son of a Gun
- The son of Socceroos legend Scott Chipperfield, Liam made his breakthrough at FC Basel – the Swiss club his father played for over 11 years.
- The teenage midfielder is on Australia’s radar but has clearly indicated he is likely to opt for Switzerland, who he has represented at youth level.
- Liam grew up watching his father play for Basel – now he wants to make his mark with his youth club.
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Although the gifted boy professes a fondness for his father’s country, it’s a country he only briefly visited over the Christmas holidays… his last trip was seven years ago.
Liam is the first of Australia’s so-called ‘golden generation’ to make his professional debut. He is still in awe of the actions of his father, who won seven league titles and six Swiss Cups in 11 years, and won numerous UEFA Champions League and Europa League titles along the way.
Chipperfield senior also earned 63 caps for the Socceroos and appeared at two World Cups.
However, Liam’s path in front of him looks red.
“Right now I’m playing for Switzerland and I don’t think so (in terms of the prospect of playing for Australia). But you never know what may happen in the future,” he said FTBL.
“Both Switzerland and Australia are close to my heart – I love both countries. Of course I grew up here and played for Switzerland (across several age groups).
“It’s not a ‘no’ to Australia, but let’s wait and see.”
Scott – who has been back in Australia for two years – advises his son, a fellow leftist, without trying to persuade him in any way about his national team or career choices.
“My father is a legend here in Basel,” added Liam. “A very big player for many years and people here still remember him and talk about him.
“He was my inspiration to play – but he never said ‘You have to do this, you have to do that’.
“He just let me play and have fun, but when you have a dad like that, you’ll always look up to him.”
Chipperfield estimates his 17-year-old son is more talented than he was at the same age.
“I’ve never seen him play, but if he says so, maybe it is,” Liam continued. “I’m far from following in my dad’s footsteps – but I’m so happy to have made my first game for Basel.
“We have a similar left foot, but he’s headed more than me – and scored a lot more goals for FC Basel at the moment.
“I’m usually a central midfielder, but I can also play on the right. He was more of a fighter (played left back) than me and maybe I’m more of a technical player. But I think I’m fast too, just like him.
“My dream since childhood was to make it as a player with my youth club. I want to play as many games as possible here. The club supported me so much.”
— FC Basel 1893 🇬🇧 (@FC_Basel_en) February 6, 2022
The move to his debut in the Swiss Super League was a defining moment for many years in production.
“Coming on was a big moment for me because I’ve spent so many years watching my dad play at this stadium and hearing the fans chant his name,” Liam explained.
“Of course you want the fans to do this for you one day.
“My father and I talk a lot on Skype. I always listen to any advice he has because he has done so much in his career.
“He’s critical sometimes, but that helps me because he knows how to motivate me.
“He watches all the games online. I’m training with the first team now and I always try to work hard, do my best and show the coach I’m ready.
“It’s a big leap into the first team but the players have really taken care of me…some of them have played with my dad and they take care of me.”
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