A Decade On, The Story Of Australian Football’s Greatest Night
Wednesday, November 16, 2005. Wednesday, November 16, 2005.
80,000 people at the Olympic Stadium in Sydney, millions around the country couldn’t believe what they had witnessed. The Socceroos, after a 32 year wait had qualified for World Cup.
80,000 people at the Olympic Stadium in Sydney, millions around the country couldn’t believe what they had witnessed.
The Socceroos, after a 32 year wait had qualified for World Cup.
It’s 16 November 2005. An unbearably tense penalty shootout to determine whether Australia or Uruguay will claim a place in the World Cup finals is reaching its climax. As John Aloisi takes a few steps back from the penalty spot, the Socceroos are weighed down by 32 years of failure. Eighty-three thousand people at Stadium Australia — and a few million others around the country — hold their breath. Could this really be the moment?
In That Night, Fox Sports presenter and football journalist Adam Peacock recounts the amazing background to one of Australian sport’s truly unforgettable events. It’s a story not just of an epic encounter with Uruguay, but of the three dismal decades that preceded it — decades defined by bureaucratic infighting and incompetence and a string of sometimes heroic, sometimes simply humiliating defeats.
The players themselves — and Dutch super-coach Guus Hiddink — explain why this time it was different. How they managed to smash the seven-time hoodoo and ultimately reinvigorate the world game in Australia. The success of the A-League, the Socceroos regularly qualifying for the World Cup finals and winning the Asian Cup, interest in football at an all-time high — it all began on a November evening in 2005 as a single sweet strike from Aloisi’s left boot entered Australian sporting folklore. It all changed, That Night.