WESTERN Knights recently celebrated the club’s 50th anniversary by announcing their Team of the Half Century – and it included Football Hall of Fame Legend Robbie Dunn.
Other Hall of Famers to be honoured were Paul McVittie, who was inducted into the Football Hall of Fame Hall of Champions in 2016, and Ronnie Campbell, who was an inductee into the Hall of Champions in 2008.
Ronnie was included in the Knights honour list as the Coach of the Half Century.
He was in charge when the club won multiple honours during an extremely productive period in the late 1990s and early 2000s.
The complete line-up of the Half Century heroes was:
Zlatko Lepan; David Annall, Craig Deans, Robbie Dunn, Ivan Zuvella; Ray Marinovic, Ivan Pikl, Paul McVittie, Carl Medica; Trim Morgan, Domagoj Gilic. Coach: Ronnie Campbell.
Subs: Tom Tomic, Claus Nielsen, Paul Cooke, Luka Jukic, Ken Boden, Stuart Montgomery.
The Knights held a gala dinner to honour their Team of the Half Century – and two weeks later held another celebration when many former players turned up for the State League Division One game against Dianella, which the Knights won 1-0. Morgan is now coach of the current Knights team and Zuvela is an assistant coach.
Among those ex-Knights players who watched the on-field action were Scott Devine, who came from Sydney for the occasion, Steve Huxtable, Dean Nicolaou, Alex Christie, Alex Novatsis, Paul Cooke, Carl Medica, Ray Marinovic, Paul McVittie and John Nicolaou.
John Nicolaou was the Knights top scorer – and the leading scorer in the league – when the club were pipped for the championship on goal difference by Fremantle City in 2000. But Nicolaou achieved some consolation for the club when he scored both goals in the Knights 2-1 win over Sorrento in the 2000 Boral Cup final.
Morgan was the State’s leading marksman when the Knights won the league title in 1998. They were also champions in 2004, 2009 and 2010.
Paul Cooke was the first player in the Knights history to capture the Premier League’s major award when he was named Player of the Year in 2006. David Micevski took the honour in 2009 and John Mirco in 2011.
The Knights were established in 1968 under the name Metropolitan and a year later, by then known as North Perth Croatia, they were admitted to what was then the State League third division. They won the title the following season
The club changed its name to Western Knights in 1995 when they won the division one title and gained promotion to the Premier League.
Their most recent success was when becoming the first club outside the top division to win the State Cup by beating Sorrento 1-0 in the 2017 final.
Pictured at the Knights awards ceremony (left to right): Luka Jukic, Ray Marinovic, Ivan Zuvela, Robbie Dunn, David Annall, Paul McVittie, Trim Morgan, Ronnie Campbell