Reliving Graham Arnold’s Socceroos moments to celebrate his birthday

Monday marks the 57th birthday of former Socceroos forward and current Socceroos head coach Graham Arnold.

To celebrate his birthday, we take a look back at some of his best moments in the green and gold.

The playing days

Graham Arnold represented the Socceroos 54 times, scoring on 19 occasions over his 11-year Socceroos career. He also had the honour of captaining on five occasions between 1993-1996.

It didn’t take long for him to find his place, when he scored his first international goal in his Socceroos debut in 1986 against Chinese Taipei in a FIFA World Cup qualifier.

He played in the 1988 Olympic Games, where Australia was knocked out after suffering a 3-0 defeat by the Soviet Union in the quarter finals.

He played an influential role in the Socceroos’ 1986,1990,1994 and 1998 World Cup qualification campaigns, scoring eight goals for Australia in these matches.

A career highlight for Arnold, is playing in Australia’s 1994 FIFA World Cup qualification matches, which produced some of Australia’s greatest moments on the football field. Australia produced a miraculous penalty victory against Canada, then played a Diego Maradona-led Argentina to a 1-1 draw which turned heads around the world.

His career came to an end in 1997 when Australia was eliminated from qualification for the 1998 World Cup due to away goals in a 2-2 draw against Iran at the MCG.


Arnold began his Socceroos coaching career in 2000, where he was an assistant coach until 2006. During this stint as an assistant the Socceroos qualified for the FIFA World Cup in 2006, the team’s first appearance in 32 years.

Following the World Cup, head coach Guus Hiddink departed for other opportunities, allowing Graham Arnold to take over as caretaker coach of the Socceroos. He coached the Australia team to the 2007 Asian Cup.

Graham Arnold

After the appointment of a new full-time coach in 2007, Arnold resumed his role of assistant coach for three more years before taking up the role of head coach at the Central Coast Mariners in 2010 before moving on to Sydney FC.

In 2018 he was named Socceroos head coach, after eight successful years coaching in the A-League including two Championship wining years with Sydney FC and the Central Coast Mariners.

Since his appointment, the Socceroos made the quarterfinals of the 2019 Asian Cup.

The U-23's side, who he also coaches, have qualified for the 2021 Olympic Games for the first time in 13 years.

Graham Arnold Australia U-23