Arsenal in Australia from 1977 to 2017

Let’s start with extracts from Wiki and Original 1977 Programme

The tournament was the idea of English entrepreneur Reg Lambourne, Strata Travel owner Tom Lawrence and Red Star Belgrade FC Secretary General Dr Miroljub Stojkovic and consisted of two competitions. The first (also known as Metro 20th Anniversary Tournament) was a straight knock-out tournament in Singapore, and the second was a mini-league in which the top two teams would play in the final. The first trophy was won by Red Star Belgrade (FK Crvena zvezda) and the second by Celtic, and was the last ever trophy Jock Stein would ever lift for Celtic.

  • Celtic FC Latchford, McGrain, Burns, Stanton, McDonald, Aitken, Wilson, Conn, Glavin, Edvaldsson, Lennox, Doyl, Kay (Manager Jock Stein)
  • Red Star Belgrade Stojanović, Jelikić, Jovanović, Muslin, Bogićević, Novković, Nikolić, Petrović, Savić, Sušić, Filipović, Šestić, Lukić (Manager Gojko Zec)
  • Arsenal Rimmer, Rice, Nelson, Powling, O’Leary, Young, Brady, Hudson, Macdonald, Stapleton, Armstrong, Rix, Mathews (Manager Terry Neill)
  • A select XI from the host nation
  • Australia Reilly, Harris, Wilson, Bennett, Williams, Harding, Barnes, Rooney, Kosmina, Ollerton, Sharne, Nyskohus, Maher, Abonyi (Manager Jimmy Shoulder)

108 Responses to Arsenal in Australia from 1977 to 2017

  1. mickydidit89 says:

    What a refreshingly original post.

    Bravo VP, and thank you.

    How the hell did we lose 1-3 to an Australian XI in 1977? 🙂

    Out of your five “interesting points”, I’ll be most interested in whether we stick with the back three.

  2. Zee says:

    Super stuff, VP, and may I say what a pleasure it is to have the Vice President of Aussie Land writing for AA. 😀

    Can’t stay just yet, but, I can tell you that the Jeff is still recovering from his injury. Those other missing the trip have either been playing competitions,Mustafi, Sanchez, Holding etc, or are in the wounded tent, or on the bus to nowhere for pastures new.

  3. David Stewart says:

    Where is the Jeff? Where is the Chuba? Maybe both with Joel?

  4. GunnerN5 says:

    Nice one VP, it’s good to see a post from the other side of the world.
    On paper it’s amazing that we lost to the Aussie team in 1977 but it was probably a case of which team handled it’s hangover’s best.

    The coming season is an exciting prospect, I’m itching to find out who our team will consist of this year. If Sanchez stays then we could have a formidable squad and season. If not it will be down to the learning curve of the new players and that may take too long for us to have a successful season.

  5. GunnerN5 says:

    When did you last see an Arsenal game live VP?

    By the way I hope you and your family have a safe and enjoyable journey to Sydney, I’m looking forward to your travel-log.

  6. GoonerB says:

    Great post VP but as Micky said we want travelogue photos as well so best pull yer finger out 🙂

    Arsenal should win these games in this modern era even without all 1st teamers but the one thing about Australia is they are always highly competitive in any sport, even ones where they are underdogs. I expect it still to be a good test for our boys.

    GN5 this coming season does potentially look an exciting prospect but right now (without Sanchez, Ozil, Ox being re-signed) I am still a bag of excitement and anticipation mixed with and anxiety and trepidation.

  7. VP of Oz says:

    you just need to look at the photo to see why the Socceroos beat Arsenal 3:1. The lads from london were so jet-lagged that they had to sit for their photo.
    This was the aussies best result of the year after getting a whooping from the mighty middlesbrough

    Australia 1 – 3 Red Star Belgrade
    Australia 1 – 3 Red Star Belgrade
    Australia 1 – 3 Red Star Belgrade
    Australia 0 – 5 Middlesbrough
    Australia 2 – 1 Bobby Charlton’s All Stars
    Australia 3 – 1 Arsenal
    Australia 2 – 3 Celtic
    Australia 2 – 3 Red Star Belgrade

    It was also the 70’s when I started supporting Arsenal.

    GN5, the only game I watched Arsenal play live was in Cardiff in 2005 when we romped home to win the FA Cup resoundingly against Manure. The first FA Cup final decided on penalties.

  8. GunnerN5 says:

    I agree GB, I’m saying basically the same thing with different phraseology.

    If we retain the incumbents we would look good without additional signings – but I fully expect us to have a lot more player movement, both in and out.

  9. GunnerN5 says:

    VP, The most memorable thing about the Arsenal v Man U final was historical – Vieira’s last kick for Arsenal won the cup for us – a truly unforgettable moment.

    Are you in transit yet?

  10. fred1266 says:

    Laca wearing #9 a big disrespectful to Lucas

  11. What a wonderful body of researched work VP, thank you, hope you enjoy watching the match on Saturday night. Can we expect a report from you? 😉

  12. chas says:

    Superb work, VP.
    Hope you have a fantastic time at the game.
    Looking forward to some beer photos. 🙂 🙂

  13. mickydidit89 says:


    Thinking aloud here about Bell perhaps being re-united with his ghastly Barca DNA and all that crap, we know The Ox is better in that right side winghaldfullbackmidfield’ish role, so as back up, is Maitland-Niles up to the job?

  14. chas says:

    Maitland-Niles (Conservative) is more of a central player I would have thought.

  15. mickydidit89 says:

    It’s what I thought, but then realized I had no idea what his top speed was, or for that matter, his 0-60 style acceleration.

    All key qualities needed for right side

  16. website says:


    Arsenal in Australia from 1977 to 2017 |

  17. LB says:

    ML’s preferred position, hmmm now there is a good debate.

  18. chas says:

  19. chas says:

  20. chas says:

    “We have a strong squad and we do not want to lose any players.

    “Even in their final contract year we need them. We cannot afford to lose them. If you’re talking about championships, to keep our best player is key.

    “I think he was impressive in the Confederations Cup, he’s now on holiday, so it’s quiet in terms of conversations.

    “But he’s a warrior on the pitch. I think he wants to come back as quickly as possible – he hates holidays, he hates to calm down.

    “I’m looking forward to playing alongside him in my last season and he thinks the same.”

  21. mickydidit89 says:

    “he hates holidays, he hates to calm down”

    Ok, so it’s certainly not Erik you’re talking about.

    Morning Chas, and even a sneaky hello to LB

  22. Big Raddy says:

    Lovely read VP.

    Looking forward to the travelogue. Proper Gooner devotion.

  23. GunnerN5 says:

    Morning all. we are a small but very knowledgeable group of AA loyalists.

    When I was a working man I never really noticed the off season but now it drives me crazy. All of the idle speculation to sell media and those that believe their nonsense and react to it is so boring, oh well kick off is only a few short weeks away.

  24. VP of Oz says:

  25. VP of Oz says:

  26. VP of Oz says:

    A lot of marketing that includes Ozil. I think he is staying

  27. VP of Oz says:

    Ozil – “It is definitely my preference to stay,” he said, according to the Daily Mail. “It is such a great club and I have always said that I feel very good at Arsenal. Once everyone is back in London we will sit down and discuss about the future”

  28. VP of Oz says:

    OK, I give up, how do you post pictures using your phone

  29. mickydidit89 says:


    If you are a grown up, then posting pictures from a phone is completely impossible.

    However, you have children, so there lies hope. Your only hope.

  30. GunnerN5 says:

    VP, you are one up on me, I can’t even figure out how to post images from my computer.

    Micky my son and daughter are both very computer wise, my daughter writes code (self taught) and my son has a lot of technical savvy. They believe that my issue is having to go through word press – which seems like a brick wall. Chas is trying to help me along and I will give his latest information a shot – but it may be like leading a horse to water ……………….

  31. chas mobile says:

    Posted on my phone via twitter.

  32. chas mobile says:

    El pieco of pisho

  33. chas mobile says:

    I obviously never grew up, hence the ability to post pictures from my telephonic device.
    Being immature and responsibility-free do have their advantages sometimes.

  34. chas mobile says:

  35. chas says:

  36. chas says:

    Which one’s VP?

  37. mickydidit89 says:


    Re your road trip. When you pass Kylie in compromising positions, snap away. Don’t hold back just because of Australia’s silly politically correct view on these things.

    Morning all

  38. Rasp says:

    Arsenal line up for the game against Sydney …

    Cech, Mertesacker, Bielik, Kolasinac, Bramall, Nelson, Coquelin, Willock, Ozil, Walcott, Welbeck.

    Subs: Martinez, Monreal, Maitland-Niles, Malen, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Elneny, Xhaka, Iwobi, Giroud, Nketiah, Lacazette.

  39. Rasp says:

    1 nil Arsenal … Mertesacker volley from an Ozil corner

  40. mickydidit89 says:

    “Mertesacker volley from an Ozil corner”

    Now we know you’re taking the piss, Rasp

    Given I’ve never heard of half the team, I can’t work out the formation. Three at the back ?

  41. mickydidit89 says:

    Could anyone watching submit the following one liners for a post later today.

    One line/word on each of the lesser knowns. Here’s the list to save work, so copy, paste, add one word/line



    Must dash

  42. Rasp says:

    Hi Micky, unfortunately I’m not watching the game only getting sporadic text commentary. I believe peaches is trying to sign up to watch the game … so perhaps you could exercise your charm on her 🙂

  43. Rasp says:

    The last commentary was “Arsenal have gone off the boil” … but it sounds like Willock is having a good game.

  44. Rasp says:

    Dreadful penalty by Welbeck ensures it stays at 1:0 after half time …

  45. Rasp says:

    Walcott playing like ……… Walcott

  46. Rasp says:

    Now we’re losing all the 50/50 tackles 😦

  47. Rasp says:

    Lots of subs about to be made … looks like Lacaz is coming on ….

  48. Rasp says:

    Within 10 minutes Lacazette does what Walcott couldn’t and finishes clinically .. 2 nil

  49. GunnerN5 says:

    I watched the game on – did anyone else?

  50. Zee says:

    Afternoon, chaps and chapesses. :-).

    Really enjoyed that — good man that La Caz!!

  51. GoonerB says:

    I am with you Micky. I would like to know how we lined up with these players. Giroud and Lac were on the pitch at the same time so did Lac play off Giroud to the left in the Sanchez role in our 3-4-2-1 system? I have wondered if that could be an interesting option. Maybe our go to 1st choice is Sanchez and Ozil behind Lac but maybe at times Lac could drop to the slightly deeper role behind Ollie.

    Reiss Nelson sounds like he may be the interesting one. One report stated he looked really promising and it sounded like he played on the right. Possible back / long-term Bellerin replacement?

  52. Cheers VP, top stuff.

    I’ve always wanted to visit Australia, but unfortunately have a fear of gravity.

    My only complaint on the land of Oz is those Boomerangs? A few years back I was in a London park were a group of student types were messing around with one. At that point I spotted a skimpily dressed girl so naturally turned my head only to be struck in the head and floored by the cursed object. i thought the idea was that once thrown it then returned to its owner?

    That 77 team was great. The only tactic was to win the ball back early, find Liam in space, and then release SuperMac one on one with the goalie.

    I remember as a kid going to watch England v Cyprus with my dad and his Cypriot mate. He was telling us before the game that Cyprus would win because they would force England to cross the ball and Mcdonald couldn’t head the ball. If that failed they would then have no choice but to complain to the United Nations about Turkeys illegal occupation of half the island thus forcing England to forfeit the game.

    Mcdonald scored 5, all headers. The UN passed a resolution that Mcdonalds head was illegal under international law, but nobody did anything about it.

    Great start for Lacassete.

  53. Zee says:


    Formation? 3:4:???

    Bielik: Excellent CB performance from one of the young bucks (20yo)

    Kolasinac: Steady performance – will settle in.

    Bramall: Lane? Fast, good feet – still needs an end product. Has potential.

    Nelson: Clever, skilful, has great potential.

    Willock: The youngest of the Willocks. Very good, skilful performance driving the mid-field forward. Hope hw does no abandon us like his brothers did.

    Malen: Only a brief performance. looks OK.

    Nketiah: As with Male, only a brief performance – looks like a little Kante – pacey, cheeky had a great shot back off the post. Me like.

    Lacazette: Scored — what else needs to be said.

    Marinez: Excellent work and saved two very good Sydney attempts.

    Must dash: I did not see any mustaches. Your spelling is gross.

    The rest of the subs came on with about 20 mins to go, and they looked a bit like strangers to each other – which of course they were — but good for all that.

  54. Zee says:


    Ossie is fine, and once you get used to hanging on with your feet, like a fly on the ceiling, you start automatically to sing Waltzing My Tilda.

  55. VP of Oz says:

    Ok, almost midnight here and we start the 12hr road trip at 5am
    Interesting game tonight and Arsenal appear to be the polite guests who only won 2:0, well because they were being polite.
    Their next game will be tougher though…

    So are we getting closer to signing Lemar

  56. VP of Oz says:

  57. VP of Oz says:

    I can now post pictures from my phone😀😀😀

    This photo is my family just after the 2005 FA Cup win

    The next photos will be of us going to see Arsenal 12 years later

    Good night

  58. VP of Oz says:

    The young girl on the far right will be driving

  59. Rasp says:

    Great family pic VP … and you look a little like VP 🙂 ….. you’ve got the forward line … better start on the midfield next …

  60. chas says:

  61. chas says:

  62. mickydidit89 says:

    Zee at 2:25

    Thank you for doing that. Much appreciated.
    Now to the Chas vids

  63. mickydidit89 says:

    Great stuff. Superb for Lacazette to get a goal

  64. VP of Oz says:

    stories in news now feed are reporting a £123m bid for Mbappe

    why so low Arsene?

  65. VP of Oz says:

    This is what awaits Arsenal next…

  66. mickydidit89 says:

    He’s haggling VP 🙂

    Bid low. Golden rule no 1

  67. VP of Oz says:

    My daughter started swerving into the next lane, after I calmly corrected her by yelling, she told me to calm down as she was only getting distracted by reading the Subway sign… 800km to go

  68. VP of Oz says:

  69. VP of Oz says:

    Ok I’ve forgotten how I posted the picture

  70. VP of Oz says:

  71. VP of Oz says:

  72. VP of Oz says:

  73. VP of Oz says:

    BTW does anyone realise that more people attended in Sydney than at the Emirates. Over 80,000 fans filled the stadium

  74. VP of Oz says:

  75. VP of Oz says:

  76. VP of Oz says:

    No traffic, just the occasional road kill

  77. VP of Oz says:

    My highlight so far is my daughter driving and deciding (she has a cold) to open the window whilst traveling at 110km/hr to spit her flem outside which stayed inside. Go figure…

  78. chas says:

    Haha, loving it, VP.

    Could I request you recreate your family shot you first posted at 2.35pm yesterday with the same facial expressions, please.

  79. chas says:

    What sort of animals make up the road kill?

  80. chas says:

  81. chas says:

  82. VP of Oz says:

    200km to go and we’ve run out of petrol. I was so focused on my daughters driving I forgot to check the gauge. When I asked my daughter why she didn’t say anything about the warning light or zero gauge, she said “I didn’t even know it was a thing”
    Move over Griswolds

  83. chas says:

  84. mickydidit89 says:

    Love it VP, keep going

    Mornin’ Chas

    Bond Baddie meets Communist

  85. mickydidit89 says:

    Thought I’d have a quick gander through transfer betting odds

    Stand out ooer for me was 30 yr old Bonucci to Milan from Juve for £32M

    They’ve got Sanchez 1:1 both to stay at Arsenal or move to City with Mahrez odds on to come to us. Mmmm

  86. VP of Oz says:

    Chas, roadkill is mainly small kangas, possums and the odd echidna

  87. GunnerN5 says:

    Hi VP – nice posts and a swell looking family, send us a current picture of you all.

    I guess you will now have a new AA moniker – Griswold of OZ.

    How did you solve the petrol problem?.

  88. GunnerN5 says:

    I’ll be watching the game in the morning at 6:00am – perhaps the earliest I ever watched an Arsenal game, I do my best to watch every one.

  89. VP of Oz says:

    Hi GN5
    Solved the petrol problem by googling the nearest town with a petrol station, rang the petrol station who gave me a local taxi drivers mobile number who I rang to come and pick us up to drive us to the petrol station. I then purchased a jerry can and 5 liters of petrol and taxi back to the car. Problem solved.
    back online in the morning, cheers

  90. chas says:

    £45-50m for Kyle Walker – the whole world of football has gone mad.

  91. GunnerN5 says:

    Chas, this sale and rumors of others leaving plus zero new additions could well be the start of a downward spiral for Spurs. The cost of the renovation of the Cockerel house may be very draining on them financially and playing their home games at Wembley will not be easy for them.

  92. VP of Oz says:

    I have sent a pre match post
    Hope it’s good enough to post
    I am off line for a while until the game

  93. Thanks VP for the post, I’ll make sure it’s sorted. Enjoy the game

  94. chas says:

    I’m just doing it P

  95. chas says:


  96. Zee says:

    What is going on with these transfer bids — and rebids?

    A juicy rumour appears out of nowhere linking Arsenal to a player we can all see is exactly what the team need – you know you have seen those tidbits many times – right?
    Then the next snippet comes out saying ‘club x’ refuses the bid.

    Umm? Usually in short order another juicy morsel floats across the screen saying that ‘Arsenal make an improved offer for player x’ and we await with baited breath for the news that the offer has been accepted and the player to eventually be unveiled at the Emirates.

    Except the media swiftly announce with unseemly glee that the new super dooper improved offer has been rejected, too.

    That normally cues the delightful blogger rants about tight fisted Arsenal, or dithering AW, or …. Well you get the drift. So, what is really going on?

    The above sequence is, of course, made worse by the news that Madrid or Chelsea or Manure or Citeh have smartly collared various top class (and some not too top class) players who will almost certainly improve their squads and simultaneously reduce our chances of winning the premier league.

    It is clear that Arsenal are intent on buying new players and have already shown that by spending around £52m on La Caz, but seem to have run into trouble when making offers for Lemar and others, which has increased the fans’ frustration – and let’s be honest the Arsenal fans’ frustration does not take much to be unleashed.

    Back to the earlier question; ‘what is really going on?’

    Allowance has to be made for the media’s eagerness to invent stories to boost their ‘hits’ and many of the stories of various players that Arsenal have been linked with are absolutely and self-evidently untrue.

    However, there are other stories that are so detailed that even the most cynical are led to believe there is some truth in them, no matter how unlikely.
    Take for example the stories about Mbappe, and the very detailed news about how much we have offered for him, and the improved offers after the seemingly inevitable rejection and the ‘facts’ that other clubs are also interested or have lost interest in him and so on and so forth.

    Like a juicy worm attracting a fish, with the fatal hook artfully concealed, the Gooner fans are drawn into believing that there is something intriguingly possible about this story and fatally their hopes are increased that a super talent is to be ours, only for Arsene to reveal in an interview that no bid has been made for Mbappe, let alone an increased bid, and none will be made as he is sure the youngster will either stay with his club or join one of the Gulf state clubs, Citeh, PSG, or a Spanish club, and you could hear the hopes of the fans crash to the floor.

    Leaving aside the manipulation of the media and some copy cat blogs, there must be something else going on, because Arsenal’s campaign to buy La Caz ambled through much the same type of bid-rejection-increased bid- rejection-successful bid before agreeing personal terms with our new centre forward.

    On to Lemar, our much desired target, wanted to perhaps replace Santi Cazorla, and we see much the same process being enacted, if the rumours are true in this case.

    Why do we need to struggle so much to arrive at the willing buyer/willing seller scenario so that we can acquire the player? Are we really being financially mean? Is Mr Wenger really dithering by being undecided as to whether we need Lemar – or should it perhaps be Mahrez? Oh, why can’t Wenger just simply agree to pay whatever the amount the other club are asking for the player from the outset. After all is said and done (again) they have the power in these circumstances, don’t they?

    Now this, I think, is where many of the club’s detractors, and of course Wenger’s too, simply overlook a simple and obvious fact – the majority of the top clubs, and some of those in the second tier, from whom we want to buy relevant top players, are owned by incredibly rich men, known as oligarchs for a good reason, or bottomless money pits, known as state-owned clubs, and we all know who they are, simply do not need the money, however much is offered.

    The only way these mega rich clubs will sell their players is if they have a vested interest in doing so – the manager does not see the player fitting in with the team selection or style — the player and the manager do not get on – the player is not getting as much playing time as he wants and is agitating for a move – and so on.

    So, these stories of bids and rejections and improved bids are unlikely to be true – it is more than likely a club has to register an interest in a player they want to buy, and wait to see if his club makes its mind up to sell – and letting the other clubs and the player’s agent know, and then sit back and await the club who are prepared to match their transfer valuation and meet the player’s personal terms, while they go through the same process to recruit a replacement.

    Financial meanness or dithering do not come into it, so those people giving the club or the manager grief should take a breath and give them, and him, a break. It’s not transfer money that is key here – even £200m for someone like Neymar is just petty cash to these ultra-wealthy club owners – the key is, they will only sell when and if the player is deemed to be no longer of benefit to them.

    There are always wheels within wheels in these things!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: