Later this month, the President of the United States, Barrack Obama, will create history, by becoming the first sitting American president to visit the remarkable city of Hiroshima, Japan. This same municipality was home for a brief period to an Adelaide City great, Aurelio Vidmar, when he took the field for J-League outfit Sanfrecce Hiroshima in 1998 – 1999. Today that link is maintained by a passionate Adelaide City FC supporter now living a long way from home, who has a found a way to re-connect.
In his own words, Aussie abroad, Adam Howard talks about football, history and Adelaide City.
“I’ve lived abroad for the last 14 years or so but through it all I’ve tried to maintain an interest in football back home. It has become easier as social media and the online presence has improved year by year.
Adelaide City had returned to the State League and Adelaide United had replaced them in the NSL before I left. The A League came into being when I was already in Japan.
The longer you’re away from home, the more important reminders of home become. As I delved more and more into Australian football and its history I became more and more determined to take a more active part in it as its diversity and persistence in the face of adversity was inspiring. Recently, the opportunity to become an Overseas/Interstate Member of Adelaide City came about and I jumped at it.
I always felt it was a massive loss to Australian football that Adelaide City who for so long had been the standard bearer of football excellence were not a part of the top tier. Adelaide City were established by Italian migrants in 1946 following World War II. It was a time of new beginnings and hope that was much needed after one of the most brutal times in modern history.
My new home, Hiroshima, best represents this more than any other place. The city and its people had to rebuild from scratch and they did this with amazing resilience, strength and hope. It is inspiring every day to walk around this city and see how it never gave up or wallowed in self-pity.
This enduring spirit is what attracts me to the Adelaide City story – of course on a completely different level to Hiroshima – that saw Italian migrants leave their war torn homes and rebuild in a foreign and often hostile environment and create something beautiful in Juventus that would benefit their adopted home land greatly in the years to come.
Even Adelaide City withdrawing from the NSL in 2003 could’ve heralded the end for this proud club in the neglected lower leagues of Australian football. This club though is made from sterner stuff and rather than the end it has been an opportunity for a new beginning, they have lived to fight another day. That day is now here.
Having heard about the vision and direction Adelaide City are looking to take moving forward, I can’t help but want to be involved in any way possible. As this pioneering club, this breeder of champions and champion teams look to become the best they can be; I want to show my support and gratitude to them for serving the game of football so well over the last 70 years.
Through the Overseas/Interstate membership I and anyone else interested in being part of the incredible Adelaide City story can be regardless of where you are. If you love football and what clubs like Adelaide City represent than you should support them as much as you can. I may be living in a different city 1000s of kilometers away but I’m committed now to forever being Adelaide City.”