Former Socceroos Craig Foster and Tim Cahill have been recognised in the Australia Day Honours list
Foster, a former Australia captain and now human rights advocate was made a Member (AM) of the general division of the Order of Australia for his ongoing activism for refugees in detention, human rights and promoting multiculturalism.
While Cahill was appointed an Officer (AO) in the general division of the Order of Australia for his service to football and philanthropic work.
After earning global headlines for his work to help free ex-Bahrain international footballer Hakeem al-Araibi from detention in Thailand in 2019, Foster has also campaigned for the transfer of refugees to New Zealand as well as being a passionate voice for Multiculturalism
The 51-year-old, who retired from professional football in 2003, featured 29 times for the Socceroos as well as a club career which included stints in England, Singapore and Hong Kong.
Cahill, 41, represented Australia at a remarkable four FIFA World Cup Finals and amassed 108 appearances for the green and gold during an international career spanning 15 years.
He scored an extraordinary 50 goals for Australia in senior internationals, including goals at three consecutive FIFA World Cup Finals (2006, 2010, & 2014).
Football Australia Chief Executive Officer, James Johnson, congratulated Cahill and Foster, acknowledging that both have made significant sporting and social contributions to the nation.
“On behalf of the Australian football community, I warmly welcome this formal recognition of Tim and Craig,” Johnson said. “Both men made their names on the football field, performing with aplomb for Australia and representing our great nation with pride.”
“Australian football is the most diverse sport in the Australian sporting landscape and their contributions to our country and society-at-large represent this diversity and extend far beyond stadiums and pitches at home and abroad. Both have demonstrated a commitment to assisting, or leading, programs designed to make people’s lives better, upholding and championing Australian values, and seeking to inspire people in Australia and internationally.”