Sunday night?s testimonial match for Maccabi Hakoah legend Jon Pillemer really was a spectacular event put on by our Feds Football Club, to pay tribute to a player who has been part of the club?s furniture as a player and administrator for a long, long time.
For Pillemer, who has won two State League Division Two grand finals with the club, it was a fitting end to his long and distinguished football career.
“It was the most special night, one of those surreal nights,” JP told Maccabi News.
“I was really appreciative of the former Socceroos, my old teammates and those that made the effort to come to the game despite the rainy day.
“I want to thank the club again for putting on the night for me. It was a humbling and special experience.
“It was also perfect to end alongside my brothers. We played in so many teams together; Super League, Australian Universities, Maccabiah, so it was a great way to end – especially being substituted for my nephew Zac!”
A host of former teammates played in the Maccabi Hakoah All Stars v Australia All Stars match.
Good friend Kimon Taliadoros, who traveled from Melbourne for the match, said the roll call of Socceroos couldn?t jump any quicker at the chance to be part of the special event.
?There aren?t a lot of Australian players to have received a testimonial,? Kimon, who first met Jon at the 1991 World Student Games, told Maccabi News.
?You would?ve thought some of the great Socceroos have ? but it?s not the case … this is one of the first. It really appealed to a lot of ex-Socceroos, guys who have played with Johnny over the years, to honour the individual and enjoy the camaraderie and share another football memory.
?You?ve got to acknowledge Maccabi, the club, for making it happen. It is something for other clubs to follow the lead on.?
Former Socceross striker Taliadoros (pictured alongside Alex Tobin, Australia’s second most capped player) coached the club to the first grade title in 2005
To view the special on John Pillemer that aired on the SBS website click here