5 June 2006 - 23 July 2006
The Powerhouse Museum takes a unique look at the rise of the Socceroos to World Cup status in The World Cup dream: stories of Australia’s soccer mums and dads. This small exhibition opens on 5 June and explores the influence of migration on Australia’s football culture.
A collaborative project between the Powerhouse Museum and Migration Heritage Centre NSW, the exhibition highlights the migration history of Socceroo families, their experiences moving to Australia and their undying passion for the game.
Colourful interviews with the parents of five Socceroos - Vince Grella, Mark Schwarzer, Scott Chipperfield, Jason Culina and Ahmed Elrich - tell their personal stories. Their diverse family backgrounds - Italian, German, Anglo-Saxon, Croatian and Lebanese - show how the face of football in Australia was transformed by post-war migration.
“Any list of players’ names demonstrates the game’s cultural diversity. Football clubs have always had an important role in helping migrants to come to terms with their new Australian society and to meet fellow countrymen and women,” said Anni Turnbull, Curator, Powerhouse Museum.
“Football for many ethnic groups was more than a simple leisure-time diversion. For many, it was a ticket to the New World and an avenue to economic opportunity,” she said.
Visitors can gain fresh insight into Australia’s football culture by listening to interviews with Rale Rasic - Socceroos coach in 1974 when we last competed in the World Cup - and with Australia’s best known football commentator and author, Les Murray.
Until Australia defeated Uruguay to qualify for the World Cup this year, our football story was fraught with rising hopes that were somehow dashed every four years. However, Australian football has had a long and chequered history with its roots in the late 19th century. In the 1880s and 1890s British football established itself in the mainland colonies of Australia. It was a migrant’s game, with a strong Scottish influence. Reputedly the first game was held in 1880 on the Parramatta Common between the local King’s School and the Wanderers, Sydney’s first football club.
This temporary exhibition captures Australia’s most memorable football moments including highlights from the recent World Cup qualifying game against Uruguay and other historic matches. Visitors can even see a piece of ‘holy turf’ from the site of the penalty shootout during the Uruguay game at Telstra Stadium. This will be auctioned on eBay. Other key football memorabilia from Socceroo families and the 1974 World Cup are also on display.