Football Australia is pleased to announce that six legends of Australian football were inducted into the Football Australia Hall of Fame at the CommBank Matildas’ match in Melbourne on Saturday.
Matildas’ greats Moya Dodd and Collette Gardiner (née McCallum), former Socceroos’ Head Coach Ange Postecoglou, globally revered administrator Brendan Schwab, leading Tasmanian media personality Walter Pless, plus past Socceroo and significant contributor to the Australian game off the pitch, Ted Smith, joined an esteemed list of Australian football personalities in the Football Australia Hall of Fame.
All six were nominated to be inducted into the Football Australia Hall of Fame via a public process, with the nominees then considered by a panel of Australian football historians.
The panel of historians provided their recommendations to the Football Australia Board, with Football Australia’s Directors subsequently ratifying each person’s elevation into the Football Australia Hall of Fame.
Football Australia Chair, Mr Chris Nikou, said: “The Football Australia Hall of Fame is the highest honour bestowed upon players and participants who have served the game – either on or off the field – with distinction, with no better demonstration of this than our Class of 2022.
“These six highly regarded figures of the Australian football community have not only made significant contributions at a local and national level but in the case of Moya (Dodd), Ange (Postecoglou), and Brendan (Schwab), their impact and influence has been felt on the global stage.
“With Australia to co-host the FIFA Women’s World Cup next year, it’s timely that one of Australia’s greatest female footballers in Collette Gardiner is acknowledged for her pioneering feats, along with former Socceroo Ted Smith who continues to play an important role with our men’s national team, and Walter Press for his unwavering dedication to the promotion of football in Tasmania,” Nikou concluded.
Since the initial induction of 84 players and participants in 1999, more than 250 male and female players, coaches, referees, administrators, and media representatives have been recognised for their outstanding contributions to our game.
Following the induction of the sextet, Football Australia Chief Executive Officer, James Johnson said: “The Football Australia Hall of Fame is an exclusive club featuring members of our community who have represented Australia with the highest of distinction, have influenced the corridors of power to drive our sport forward, or given tirelessly to support the growth of the game,” Johnson said.
“The six newest inductees are outstanding ambassadors for Australian football, and I would like to provide our warmest of congratulations to Moya (Dodd), Collette (Gardiner), Walter (Pless), Ange (Postecoglou), Brendan (Schwab), and Ted (Smith) on their richly deserved recognition and thank them for their important contribution to our great game.”
Football Australia 2022 Hall of Fame Inductees
Moya Dodd's playing career spanned almost two decades with the South Australian state team, and with the Matildas from the mid-1980s to mid-90s, including as vice-captain. Since retiring as a player, Dodd has been a fearless advocate for gender equality in football and campaigning for women to have their voices heard at decision making levels in the game. Globally, she has successfully campaigned to give hundreds of millions of girls access to the game with the overturning of the hijab ban and campaigned to have women received at the FIFA Executive Committee for the first time.
Collette Gardiner (née McCallum)
Widely considered one of Australia's greatest female footballers, Collette Gardiner (née McCallum) played for almost a decade with the Matildas. As a youth player her experience was prolific before moving to the senior team where she was the key piece in the Matildas midfield for many years, including the 2007 FIFA Women's World Cup™ and in Australia's victorious 2010 AFC Women’s Asian Cup™ campaign. Born in Scotland and raised in Perth, Gardiner recovered from two ACL injuries as a teenager to become a regular senior Matildas’ player by age 20. She was also one of the first Australian women to win club titles overseas.
Tasmania's 'Mr Football' Walter Pless moved to Hobart from Austria as a child. His love for football grew playing for Glenorchy Knights where he rose to the senior side in the mid-1960s. After a long-playing career, Pless initially focused on coaching, and since 1978 has written and photographed extensively on the game in Tasmania. Despite retiring from full-time work in 2009, he continues to write extensively. In a region where football struggles for national prominence, Pless is an institution and his tireless work in promoting the game for over four decades makes him widely known and loved by the Tasmanian football community.
Australia's highest-profile international male football personality in 2022, Ange Postecoglou's recent coaching success in Scotland has just been the next step of a prolific career mostly in Australia. Postecoglou grew up in Melbourne, initially making his name at South Melbourne FC and winning national championships including as captain and coach. Club coaching success continued at Brisbane Roar FC and in Japan. His international coaching career started at a young age, initially with the Young Socceroos. Postecoglou took the senior side to the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ and led the Socceroos to the 2015 AFC Asian Cup™ title on home soil, Australia's most prominent international men's tournament victory.
Brendan Schwab is an architect of the global and Australian player association movements as a co-founder of the World Players Association, FIFPRO Asia / Oceania, the Australian Athletes' Alliance, and Professional Footballers Australia. He has played an instrumental role in the transformation of Australian football over the last two decades. Throughout a 25-year career, he has represented and worked with multiple teams and athletes in several sports, including the Socceroos and Matildas. Over the past five years, Schwab has helped pioneer global sport and human rights movements, by negotiating major human rights commitments with international governing bodies including FIFA.
Raised in Melbourne, Ted Smith played for the Victorian Colts and in the Laidlaw Cup against New Zealand youth, and was in Australia's historic 1956 Olympics squad where he played in both games in Melbourne as a 21-year-old. Smith was a foundation member of the committee appointed by then Soccer Australia to create the national Hall of Fame in the mid-1990s. After retiring, Smith has worked extensively to organise functions for the Socceroos, especially when touring teams have visited. Despite his ageing years, he is still actively promoting the sport in particular the men's national team, including the important Centenary Year in 2022.
Football Australia – Hall of Fame Inductees
Collette Gardiner (nee McCallum)
Sir Frank Lowy
George Dick OAM
Donato Di Fabrizio
John De Witt
William "Bill" Henderson
Joseph J Honeysett
Peter Van Ryn
1999 – Inaugural induction (84)
William "Bill" Henderson
Michael De Bruyckere
1999 – Inaugural induction (cont.)
Johnny Warren, MBE
James "Judy" Masters
Joe Marston MBE
Sir William Walkley
Tony Kovac OAM
Sam Papasavas OAM
Ian Brusasco AM
Giacomo "Jim" Bayutti OA
Michael Weinstein AM, BEM
Elaine Watson OAM
Vic Tuting MBE
Theo Maramaris MBE
John Walter Fletcher
Sir Arthur George AO
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