Raised in Yugoslavia, Despotovski played with Red Star Belgrade and Dinamo Pancevo before returning to Perth in 1992. A few seasons with Floreat Athena led to his first excursion onto the National Soccer League stage with Heidelberg United, Despotovski making his debut in November 1994 and finishing the season as his clubs top goal scorer. He signed with Morwell Falcons the following season but managed only a handful of appearances.
By mid-1996 Despotovski was back in the west to spearhead the attack of the national competition's newest addition, Perth Glory. He was the club's top goal scorer in 1996/97 and 1998/97, in between which he attended a Socceroos training camp. Despotovski struggled for consistency and with injury over the seasons that followed, the most serious being a a broken foot bone that forced him to miss seven weeks of the 1999/2000 campaign, when Glory finished top of the table.
Despotovski's fifth season in Glory colurs was undoubtedly his best to date. He combined brilliantly with Damian Mori and in March 2001 was placed on standby for the initial phase of the Socceroos World Cup qualifying campaign. Upon completion of the 2000/01 season Despotovski placed second in the Johnny Warren Medal (NSL Players' Player of the Year) and won his club's highest honour, the Most Glorious Player.
Despotovski firmly established himself as one of the NSL's genuine stars with a brilliant 2001/02, capped by a second Most Glorious Player trophy. He scored the full length of the season as Glory finished on top of the table. In July 2002 Despotovski scored on his Socceroos debut against Vanuatu, he hit another four goals in his first international start against New Caledonia which was followed by appearances against Tahiti and New Zealand.
The final two NSL seasons followed a similar pattern. In May 2003 Despotovski celebrated his 200th Glory appearance by putting away his 100th goal for the club. Having scored 11 goals in 12 finals outings, Despotovski played a big role in Glory's 2-0 Grand Final victory against Olympic Sharks. Another Grand Final win - this one against Parramatta Power at the end of 2003/04 - was followed by Despotovski's third Most Glorious Player trophy.
With the national league taking an 18-month hiatis, Despotovski returned to State League football with Inglewood United and Bonnyrigg White Eagles before signing a new one-year Glory deal in December 2004. The first A-League season had many rewards for the veteran striker, foremost the prestigious Johnny Warren Medal as the competitions' Players' Player of the Year. Despotovski's 8 goals made him one of four players to share the competition's top goal scorer prize and voted the Most Glorious Player a record fourth time.
Despotovski threatened to quit Glory during the off-season as contract negotitations dragged into their third month before agreeing a new deal. A few months later he was contemplating retirement after undergoing a second operation on a recurring back injury. He battled ongoing back problems throughout 2006/07 before bowing out of football at home against Newcastle Jets in January 2007.
|06.07.02||Vanuatu (Auckland)||2-0 (won)||Oceania Nations Cup||Sub on after 62 minutes for Tom Pondeljak; scored one goal|
|08.07.02||New Caledonia (Auckland)||11-0 (won)||Oceania Nations Cup||Full game; scored four goals|
|12.07.02||Tahiti (Auckland)||2-1 (won)||Oceania Nations Cup||Sub off after 53 minutes for Joel Porter|
|14.07.02||New Zealand (Auckland)||0-1 (loss)||Oceania Nations Cup||Sub on after 73 minutes for Joel Porter|
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