Football Australia has announced that Tony Vidmar will be the new Socceroos head coach. He replaces Graham Arnold — who left to take up his appointment with Sydney FC — and has been tasked to qualify Australia for the 2024 Olympics. His first game in charge will be an international friendly match against Kuwait next month, which he hopes will then lead to more matches during the 2019 Asian Cup qualification period. Socceroos great Tony Vidmar has been tasked to guide Australia to the 2024 Paris Olympics.
Vidmar, who has 76 caps for the Socceroos and was a 1992 Olympian, was named the Olyroos coach on Wednesday.
He takes over for current Socceroos coach Graham Arnold, who has held both positions since 2018.
According to the 51-year-old former Rangers defender: “I have been privileged in my life to have had a long association with the Olyroos, so it is a real honour to know that over the next two years I will continue to be involved with a program that is so crucial for Australian football.”
Vidmar will remain part of Arnold’s Socceroos coaching staff until the conclusion of Australia’s World Cup campaign, with the pair set to spend five months together in Russia.
“Abs has been a staunch member of the Olyroos for 10 years and was instrumental in guiding the team to qualify for the Rio Olympics,” said Football Federation Australia chief executive David Gallop.
“While I won’t start as Olyroos head coach until after the Socceroos’ World Cup campaign is over, Trevor and I are already in regular contact about the program, players coming through the pathway, and preparations not only for Paris 2024 but also for the upcoming AFC U-23 Asian Cup in Uzbekistan,” Vidmar said.
James Johnson, the Football Federation Australia CEO, said the Olyroos were in “good hands” with Vidmar.
“We feel he has a thorough knowledge of not just how to lead the team to the (Olympic Games) event, but also how to assist develop players along the route,” Johnson said.
The AFC qualifications for the men’s football competition at the Paris Olympics begin next year.