There was a great deal of hesitation among Australian football fans after the FFA’s recent announcement of Graham Arnold taking the reins of the Socceroos after Bert van Marwijk’s FIFA World Cup cameo comes to an end in July.

Arnold has seen his share of success within the A-League in recent years but it is clear to see just why fans of the green and gold are concerned after an unsuccessful stint in the role after the 2006 World Cup.

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It was never going to be an easy task following up from Guus Hiddink leading Australia to their most successful World Cup campaign ever, but the Sydney native struggled during the Asian Cup winning just 33.33% of his nine games and surrounding the tournament in 2007.

Arnold then stepped down after the competition and took the role of assistant manager leading into and during the 2010 FIFA World Cup, relishing the role under Pim Verbeek and alongside co-assistant Henk Duut.

The next step on the managerial journey was with the Central Coast Mariners in which he brought the most out of current Socceroos stars Tom Rogic, Mathew Ryan and Trent Sainsbury. The Mariners finished Premiers in 2011/2012 and won the title a year later.

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An impressive few years led to attention from overseas where the Sydney-sider took on a  short stint in Japan with J-League side Vegalta Sendai but he never really settled in and lost his place after an eight-game winless streak.

The final step in the manager’s path to glory was a move to his hometown club Sydney FC where he has crafted one of the best if not the very best side the A-League has ever seen breaking the A-League points record last year with 66 points in 27 games.

Arnold has seen some ups and downs during his four-year tenure with the club taking over after a disappointing 5th-place finish in 2013/2014 to take the side to second place and finals runners-up the following year and owns an astonishing 57.14% win rate with the Sky Blues.

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While Arnold has often relied on overseas recruits to get consistent results the soon-to-be Socceroos coach has nurtured a number of Australian youngsters including Bernie Ibini, Alex Gerbasch, Matthew Jurman and Joshua Brillante as he looks to shape a strong future for our nation.

Though it will need to be seen to be believed, Arnold has seen a great deal since his last reign as Socceroos coach learning under managerial greats and going off to win titles with two different A-League clubs introducing a winning mentality and proving that he has matured both as a mentor and a manager.

 

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Recent Sports Media graduate from the University of Canberra. Love all things football and can't wait to be part of the growth of the game in Australia. Waiting for the day the FFA come to their senses and hand us an A-League team... but could be waiting a while.