Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech has paid tribute to a trio of Caltex Socceroo greats for setting the path for Australian players to forge careers in Europe.
Ahead of his trip to Australia next week as part of Arsenal’s tour Down Under, Cech spoke to the Gunners website about the impact of Aussies in the EPL.
AUSSIE TRAILBLAZERS IN THE EPL
"We played against Tim Cahill when he was at Everton and I think it’s an interesting one because you are miles away [from home],” Cech told Arsenal Player.
"Australia is very far and Mark Schwarzer was going 20 years to play with the national team so you can imagine you go all the way, just before the game you played in the Premier League. It’s not easy but I think it just shows how committed they were to the national team, going back and forth.
"Once they have success it obviously opens the door for everybody and I thought Mark, having played so many games at Middlesbrough and then Fulham, left a huge mark on the Premier League.
“Then with [Mile] Jedinak, Cahill, when you have players like this coming in and doing really well it obviously opens gates and opens the doors for the other players as well.
“If they qualify for big tournaments and then the players do well, they can end up in the Premier League or Bundesliga or the European top leagues."
ARSENAL IN AUSTRALIA
The Gunners will touch down in Australia on Monday and spend a more than a week in Sydney as part of their preparations for the new English Premier League season.
Arsene Wenger’s side will play two friendlies against Hyundai A-League clubs, starting with a clash against champions Sydney FC at ANZ Stadium on Thursday, July 13.
They’ll then take on Western Sydney Wanderers at the same venue two days later.
In-form Vukovic earns Genk contract extension
Caltex Socceroos goalkeeper Danny Vukovic has been rewarded for his excellent form with a two-season contract extension at Belgian club KRC Genk. The 33-year-old's deal was due to expire at the end of the campaign but the Pro League leaders have taken up their option to extend
Aussies Abroad: Vukovic’s Genk beaten in battle of Belgium’s top two
Danny Vukovic’s Genk remain well clear on top of the table despite falling to a rare defeat in Belgium against Club Brugge overnight. In a meeting of the competition’s top two at the Jan Breydel Stadion, Genk were beaten the fired-up home side, going down 3-1. There was lit
Aussies Abroad: Ryan’s Brighton through to Quarter-Finals while Milligan, Giannou pick up strong results
There were a handful of Caltex Socceroos in action on Sunday morning (AEDT) while some key figures were rested as their clubs negotiated cup ties. Firstly to Europe where Mark Milligan played a full 90 at the heart of Hibernian’s midfield as they welcomed new manager Danny Hec
Aussies Abroad: Luongo gallant in Watford defeat
Caltex Socceroos midfielder Massimo Luongo can turn his attention to the EFLChampionship after QPR crashed out of the FA Cup on Saturday morning (AEDT). The 26-year-old played the full 90 minutes in QPR’s 1-0 loss to Watford at Loftus Road, in a tight game where each side cou