This article isn't a preview of those fancied clubs or their stars or the endless accolades they have on tap in the media, nor is it that the Socceroos should get the Australian Team Sports awards for their remarkable effort at the World Cup (performance is never only results), rather my article is on the benefits of football off the pitch.
There are endless 'old boy networks' – such as those so called prestigious old-school tie wink-wink nudge-nudge networks, those members of high flying corporate entities and those multi-national networks old boy networks – no one denies any of this or the deals done as a result.
There is one sport network that transcends all international, national and local such links by the proverbial country mile, and that's the football network.
One of Well-Being Australia's favourite sons in Tony Dunkerley. Tony came to Melbourne Australia as a ten pound pom in the early 60s - knew no one, lonely as, and what bought him comfort and support were the links he found in football.
Tony Dunkerley went on to coach junior State and National junior football teams, went on to become the Commissioner for Junior Football and elected the President of the Victorian Football Federation. He grew his business and became the Australian MD of a UK multi-national.
In all these years he also found time to travel with the Well-Being Australia outreach team on Country Town Tours speaking to youth groups and schools, in addition to speaking in Melbourne in many schools on the value of mentoring.
Mentoring is Tony Dunkerley's thing, and now he's mentoring the Well-Being Australia 'young writers' in the Press Service International young writer program associated with Christian Today.
What was it that provided all these links and associations? He came out to Australia with nothing. It was the football network. This is not in any way an isolated case, This story can be repeated over and over in any country in the world.
In my own situation football has provided me many links and networks through which not only my community base has broadened but likewise my field of business and circle of friends. This has meant international road trips across several continents, attending weddings across the world and a whole lot more.
Little wonder Churches have developed strong football associations – it all comes down the the same benefit, those invaluable networks. But football links are wider and more extensive than say cricket and netball (kind of limited to Commonwealth Countries), or say 'seasonal' Track and Field.
In sport there are many networks, but none is as far reaching as is Football.
Wesley Tronson is a bank manager on the Gold Coast and lived in England for seven years to 2010 in banking and soccer.
Wesley Tronson's previous articles may be viewed at www.pressserviceinternational.org/wesley-tronson.html