Australian football is in mourning following the death of former Socceroos coach Frank Arok, aged 88.
“We are deeply saddened to learn that former @Socceroos coach, Frank Arok AM, has passed away at the age of 88,” Football Federation Australia tweeted on Tuesday night.
“Frank made a telling impact on Australian football, coaching the Socceroos in 89 internationals, and at the Seoul 1988 Olympic Games.
“Frank also made a significant contribution to club football in Australia, coaching numerous sides and mentoring hundreds of successful players in the National Soccer League.
We are deeply saddened by the news that former @Socceroos coach, Frank Arok, passed away today.
Football Australia would like to extend its condolences to Frank’s family, friends and loved ones.
His profound impact on Australian football will never be forgotten. Vale. pic.twitter.com/Rc3v6k1Vwp
— Socceroos (@Socceroos) January 12, 2021
“Football Australia would like to extend its condolences to Frank’s family, friends and loved ones.
“His profound impact on Australian football will never be forgotten. Vale.”
The Yugoslav-born legend played for FK Jedinstvo for a decade in the 1950s before making his name as one of the great Australian managers.
He coached St George Saints, as well as South Melbourne FC, Port Melbourne, Gippsland Falcons and Sydney Olympic but is best remembered for his role as coach of the Australian national team.
— Frank Farina (@Frank_Farina) January 12, 2021
He was in charge of the Socceroos for 48 internationals between 1983 and 1989 and made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in the 1990 Australia Day honours for his service to soccer.
After working with Perth Glory’s youth team between 2001 and 2003, Arok moved back to Serbia with his wife to retire.
Fellow former Socceroos coach Frank Farina and English Premier League winner Robbie Slater were others to post their condolences on Twitter.
“Frank Arok RIP ! The man that discovered and made me ! Thank you ! A true legend ! @Socceroos,” Slater posted.
Others said he was among the five most influential figures in Australian soccer history.
I’m devastated by the news (as confirmed by his daughter Marijana), that our longest ever serving @socceroos coach, Frank Arok has passed away at the age of 88. I spent every day for 2 seasons at @smfc with Frank between 1994 & 1996. He was a friend, mentor, father figure and >
— Peter Filopoulos (@peterfilopoulos) January 12, 2021