Rale Rasic

Born in the former Yugoslavia in 1935, Rale Rasic was selected to play for the Yugoslavia Youth team at the age of 17. He went on to secure a Physical Education degree at Belgrade University. After coming to Australia, he joined Melbourne JUST in 1962, helping to win the State League championship and Dockerty Cup. Rasic represented Victoria nine times before retiring as a player in 1966. His coaching career blossomed with a Victorian State League championship and a national Under-16 title. Rasic was appointed national coach in August 1970, starting a run of success for the Socceroos that included a 12-match unbeaten streak in the 1972 world tour, an undefeated tour of Asia and a 2-2 draw with Pele’s Santos. Rasic took the team through the 1974 rounds to line up matches against West and East Germany and Chile, culminating in Australia’s first appearance in the World Cup Finals in Germany. Rasic was the inaugural NSL Coach of the Year with Marconi Fairfield in 1977, an honour he received again in 1987 with Apia Leichhardt. He has also won the national league championship and the NSL Cup.