"IT'S massive. It's like winning the lotto."
John Tratt couldn't hide his excitement when talking about his son, Jacob, after the Dubbo junior was awarded his first professional contract with Sydney FC.
Twenty-year-old Jacob Tratt has been in the A-League club's system for years and captained their under-20s side to premiership glory in 2014.
But nothing could top the excitement of when Sydney FC coach Graham Arnold gave him a call to tell him he had won a place in the Sky Blues' senior squad for 2015-16.
"We knew two weeks ago," his father said.
"Melbourne City had offered him a trial with them up in Darwin against Adelaide United but he told Steve Corica, who had been coaching him, about it and Steve said to leave it for a few days and then Graham rang him the next night and told him to call Melbourne City back to tell them he was signing a contract with Sydney FC on Tuesday."
And Tuesday was when all the youngster's hard work paid off.
From the hundreds of kilometres travelled with his father to attend competitions and training camps during his days growing up in Dubbo to working tirelessly with NSW Premier League side Sutherland, Tratt has continually impressed with his talent and also his attitude.
"We've been travelling ever since the under-13s when he was with the Western Panthers and he was lucky he got to play through to the 18s with them then he went to Sutherland and has kicked on from there," Tratt said.
"It's massive the way his game has improved.
"He was Rookie of the Year with Sutherland in his first year and then was a squad member who the team were based around and he scores goals too and not many other defenders can do that."
Despite being comfortable at right back or in the centre of defence, Tratt can get forward and his seven goals in last season's premier league as well as two in the FFA Cup impressed as much as his defensive work.
The deal is just for the one season but Tratt has a huge chance to impress further as he trains every day right under the nose of Arnold and many other Sydney FC senior figures.
"He wants to make his debut this year," John Tratt said.
"He's not just there to make up the numbers, he knows he's going to learn plenty but he wants to push for a spot."
Tratt said soccer has been his son's number one passion since he was four years old.
After seeing how much time and effort their son had put into the game he loves, Tratt admitted he and his wife could not have been more proud when Jacob called with the news.
"His mother couldn't talk, we've seen the journey," he said.
"When he called he was nonchalant but I always knew he's make it some time because of his talent and also his attitude but it's nice for him to achieve it."
Sydney FC open their A-League campaign on October 10 against Melbourne City at Allianz Stadium.