The Australian Soccer Federation's marketing company would have to take the blame for the lack of visiting overseas teams to Perth in 1985. The marketing company ran a series of competitions in the Eastern States generally involving three visiting teams plus the Australian Socceroos. The main reason for this was to give the Socceroos essential first class practice against formidable opposition and the resultant finance from the gate proceeds and TV franchises would provide funds to enable the Socceroos to tour Europe in preparation for the World Cup.
It was a stroke of bad luck for the A.S.F. that some of the games coincided with the terrible, tragedy of Brussels, and unfortunately the media coverage of that event adversely affected the gates. Although the Soccer Federation of Western Australia made every effort to obtain teams from the United Kingdom to play here, the fact that we could not guarantee further games in the Eastern States, Asia or New Zealand, deterred teams from coming. We did, however, have as our guests a German team "Sportverein". They played against and were billetted by the State League club Balga and by all accounts they all had a high old time. The visiting players were obviously suffering from jet lag and hospitality, when they appeared at the Velodrome. Balga were much too strong and won the game by a fairly high score which nobody seems to be able to remember.
After considerable criticism from clubs and the media, the Federation executive decided to bring over the National Youth side for a match against the State team, and although the full Youth team which had played in Moscow came to Perth, little interest was shown by either the clubs or the general public. A very small crowd saw the Youth Team deservedly beat the State team by two goals to nil at Bayswater Oval.
It is hoped that we may have better fortune in the coming season, as the marketing company seems to have disappeared, and the build up for the 1990 World Cup may not be so important at this time. We are already in the process of negotiating to have an overseas team here in 1986 for the benefit of the local soccer public.
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This page was last updated on the 24th February 2006