Cahill calls time on an illustrious career

Friday, 29 March, 2019 60comments  |  Jump to last
Everton and Australia legend Tim Cahill has announced that he is hanging up his boots at the age of 39.

The former Millwall forward signed for the Toffees in 2004 and went on to play 278 times in all competitions, scoring 68 goals, many of them vital to David Moyes's team that came close to winning the FA Cup in 2009 and came within a controversial Pierluigi Collina decision from qualifying for the group stage of the Champions League in 2005.

He left Goodison Park in 2012 to join New York Red Bulls and spent three years in Major League Soccer before moving to China for spells with Shanghai Shenhua and Hangzhou Greentown.

Stints with Melbourne City in his native Australia and back at Millwall followed before he finished his club career at Jamshedpur in India.

His decision comes in the wake of his retirement from international football last November which ending a career in which he lit up more than one World Cup with brilliant goals and became the Socceroos all-time leading scorer with 50 goals from 108 appearances.

“I'm an old man now in football years,” told Optus Sport. “I'd love to keep playing, you know. I had a great stint for six months in India but I'm interested in TV, going to start my A (coaching) license and spend quality time with my family and chill out for a bit.

“It was amazing to play in four big continents. I had a great career and I'm really thankful. I'm someone that massively respects the game and I'll take my time to learn more. Coaching is something that's definitely going to be on the horizon.”


Reader Comments (60)

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Mike Gaynes
1 Posted 29/03/2019 at 05:20:30
Vaya con dios to my second-favorite Blue of all time.

Tim Cahill hangs up his boots at age 39. Going for his coaching license and some TV gigs.

Thank you for the memories, mate. You're the reason I still wear #17 for my club.

Mark Murphy
2 Posted 29/03/2019 at 06:30:21
Dios por una bicycleta Mike- I thought Tim had snuffed it when I read your comment!!!
I wear the same shirt for my vets team for the same reason (apart from it’s the only XL shirt) loved Tim Cahill and long for the day that we find another!
Paul Birmingham
3 Posted 29/03/2019 at 06:45:00
A privelage to have seem TC play for EFC, and what a fighter he was.

Immense and a true hero.. if only the current players could show the same guts and determination..

And he popped up with a few against the RS.

That goal in the World Cup in Brazil, for Oz, is one of the all time great goals in World Cup football.

Look forward to seeing how Tim gets on with his coaching career.

Motivation, passion, desire and commitment and true guts, good luck Tim, in the future and further successes.

Jim Bennings
4 Posted 29/03/2019 at 07:26:09
What a player, what a man!

Absolutely loved watching the passion, the love that Cahill had on the pitch for this club and the fact he was such a hungry competitor that had a burning desire to try and do everything he could to win.

My favourite Blue from recent years, I think it’s going to be something special to replace Cahill from that standing.

Martin Nicholls
5 Posted 29/03/2019 at 07:26:36
Inspirational player with all the qualities that seem to be lacking in meant in our current squad.
Martin Nicholls
6 Posted 29/03/2019 at 07:28:31
*many in our current squad! Edit facility not working - any sign of a fix yet Lyndon?
Paul Tran
7 Posted 29/03/2019 at 07:31:16
If we're going to persist with the idea of bringing old players back on the coaching staff, why not bring back this one who gets the club, the fans and makes competing & winning a matter of honour?

Mind you, that's probably the very reason why he won't be asked back!

Ray Roche
8 Posted 29/03/2019 at 08:08:49
Tim Cahill already runs “Coaching Clinics” for young hopefuls as he tries to find the next, well, Tim Cahill I suppose. An old football mate of mine works as a coach for him in Australia bu I think he runs several centres.
Les Green
9 Posted 29/03/2019 at 09:27:42
Completely agree with Paul @7
I can't think of a better person to inspire pride, commitment and self-belief. We really could do with some of that rubbing off on the current squad, and ingraining it into the youth set-up
Phil Sammon
10 Posted 29/03/2019 at 09:31:40
Paul 7

Why not?

Let’s start with him having fuck all coaching experience.

I don’t know how you can have a go at the ‘Boys Club’ and then go and advocate Cahill for a role.

A very average player in my eyes with a couple of quite remarkable talents. Incredible timing and one of the best leaps I’ve ever seen. There was no questioning his commitment either.

He will go down as a club legend and rightly so. Let’s leave it at that for now.

Chris Green
11 Posted 29/03/2019 at 10:07:20
Possibly my fav player. Not the most talented, not the most naturally gifted... but a man whose determination, will and ability he used to his absolute utmost.

He always played with his heart on his sleeve, LOVED Everton for giving him a chance in the prem league and has proven to be another of that type of player that is VERY hard to replace.

True Everton legend! Enjoy the retirement, but come back and coach here... teach our team and youngesters a little of that hunger that made you such a great player!

John Hammond
12 Posted 29/03/2019 at 10:16:51
Ah the memories! One of my all-time favourite players. Good luck to him with the TV and coaching. Wouldn't be surprised to see him in Millwall's dugout in some capacity in the next few years.
John Raftery
13 Posted 29/03/2019 at 10:52:02
A player who made the most of his talent and always gave fans the impression he cared about the result. A magnet for the ball in both penalty areas, he scored some cracking goals at vital moments. His overhead kick equaliser in the last minute at Chelsea in November 2007 was one of the best. His heading ability was outstanding.
Jon Withey
14 Posted 29/03/2019 at 10:59:30
My favourite player and an absolute pain for the opposition.

Blue kangaroo was apt - he had such a spring and a great header of the ball.

One a few bargains that Moyes and his team found - Arteta and Pienaar also come to mind.

Stephen Meighan
15 Posted 29/03/2019 at 11:20:33
Cahill in; Ferguson out.

Any offers?

Terry Underwood
16 Posted 29/03/2019 at 12:01:02
coming to a corner flag near you oh yeah
Phillip Warrington
17 Posted 29/03/2019 at 12:09:43
Tim Cahill, a true club player, gave the club a 100% every time he wore the shirt with pride.
John Pickles
18 Posted 29/03/2019 at 12:26:36
For the first and only time in his career, 'The Tiger' has had a doubt that he's as good as anyone else on the pitch.

If he can instil that self belief into young players, he will be a great coach.

Tommy Surgenor
19 Posted 29/03/2019 at 13:06:24
Get him involved with our set up while he does his badges.

Quick before he joins his old amigo at city.

Jay Wood

20 Posted 29/03/2019 at 13:36:04
Awesome player and bloke. Never, ever understood the claims by some that he was a very limited footballer, but for his drive and determination.

He was tidier on the ball than some give him credit for and played many a cute pass.

Of course he is most remembered for his battling, never-say-die Aussie attitude and his prodigious leaping and heading of the ball. Whilst Timmy Cahill was on the pitch a game was never lost until the final whistle. I bet the opposition hated him.

It's a trait sadly absent in the current Everton squad.

Clarence Yurcan
21 Posted 29/03/2019 at 14:36:31
I was lucky enough to see Timmy play here with NY Red Bull 6-7 years ago or so, his Everton career was over by the time I made it to Goodison. Got to see him score one of his famous headed goals (off a Thierry Henry assist, no less!)
Justin Doone
22 Posted 29/03/2019 at 15:19:20
Bring him back as a player coach.

Our often static midfield would be shown up by a 39 year old. Id still back him to our jump and out of muscle any of our players including the 'mighty' Mina.

Seriously though if he can bring his enthusiasm, tenacity, work ethic and winning mentality to the team he'd be an asset to any club.

People may scoff as he hasn't won anything but he's got a winning mentality that took him to the top of his game every time he played. It's a team game and sadly he player his peak football for average teams going through transition.

Mike Gaynes
23 Posted 29/03/2019 at 15:20:39
So here, for your flag-punching pleasure, is a YouTube compilation of Timmy's five greatest goals, including the ones mentioned by John and Paul above. And his first Red Bulls goal off a smashing volley, albeit not the one Clarence saw.

Probably my favorite was the last-minute winner against City in 2008, and I loved that stretch when he and Fellaini played as an emergency forward line for several games.

But Paul's got it right -- that lefty volley against the Netherlands is immortal.

Kieran Kinsella
24 Posted 29/03/2019 at 15:44:20
People say he was great but in technique there are man y different areas to judge. I'd wager he was as good as anyone with technique aerially. Also, remember his overhead scissor kick at Stamford Bridge? Yeah he wasn't someone making 40 yard passes or dribbling from one of the pitch to the other, but if had he would have been Ronaldo
Jamie Crowley
25 Posted 29/03/2019 at 15:47:00
I remember a long, long time ago on TW I posted that if I were in war, I'd want Tim Cahill lying in the foxhole next to me.

I still stand by that.

There's been no other player for Everton whom I'd want my kids to emulate more. It's all about desire and effort.

Hiding in Felliani's hair, jumping out to head home goals.

Those were the days.

Tony Everan
26 Posted 29/03/2019 at 15:57:26
A true blue .

W hen Tim was playing and it was 0-0 you always knew there was a chance he would get on the end of something and score the winner.

Quite often hid did.

He is a fantastic professional who has had a great career, and would make an inspirational coach . I wonder if the club is interested in bringing him in?

Peter Gorman
27 Posted 29/03/2019 at 16:05:51
"A very average player in my eyes with a couple of quite remarkable talents."

Oh Philip, just a couple? Contrarian to the last.

Chris Oldfield
28 Posted 29/03/2019 at 16:42:20
We can spend as much money as we like but until we get a player like Tim Cahill on the pitch again it won't matter!
Steve Hogan
29 Posted 29/03/2019 at 17:23:43
Certainly deserved more from his career in terms of trophies, a little disappointed at the veiled criticism by some posters. To put it bluntly, he would simply stroll into any Everton side of the last 10 years.

For a guy who wasn't an out and out forward, his goal return was amazing. My abiding memory of him was scoring against Newcastle at Goodison which clinched the play off place in the Champions League, and his 'physical assault' on Alonso, where he pinned him to the floor in the build up to the goal against the r.s at the Gwladys St end.

Despite his lack of inches, he was simply unplayable in some games against much bigger physical opponents, John Terry for instance.

He played in what was probably Moyes best ever starting eleven, to include Arteta, Pienaar, Baines (I think).

Jack Convery
30 Posted 29/03/2019 at 17:26:32
In the trenches with Tim - many a blue lady would love that. I for one thought he bled blue blood and gave everything he could for the shirt - its an Aussie mentality - never give up and sod losing. Maybe we should use that as our new motto - Neverus Giveupus Sodus Losingium - Heres to your future in footie Tim - I hope its legendary.
Adolf Ng
31 Posted 29/03/2019 at 17:43:47
Justin #22 in fact, he has won both the Asian Cup and the Oceania Cup. Probably not the most illustrious trophies and not any at club level. However, he actually has that winning mentality. We will be a completely different team of our current players can capture 50% of such mentality.
Paul Burns
32 Posted 29/03/2019 at 18:39:30
Proper player and true legend.
God, we were so close to having a great side during his time with some real quality players.
A little bit of investment then would have made all the difference, instead Kenwright decided to sell our best players to our rivals and look where that's got us.
Best chairman man u, city and Chelsea have ever had.
Jimmy Hogan
33 Posted 29/03/2019 at 18:52:24
Mensch! 'Nuff said.
Minik Hansen
34 Posted 29/03/2019 at 19:33:33
I loved reading his book. Missing his wonderful headers. Started following Everton when he was playing for us (2007). He inspired me to fight with guts for it when I'm playing football and still do. Great memories, all the best to the one and only Tim Cahill. COYB.
Paul McGinty
35 Posted 29/03/2019 at 19:37:11
When he was with the Red Bulls along with Henry, though playing holding midfield, at corners and set pieces he was marked by the centre half and blocked off by another player. Testament to his will to win his aerial battles. Watched him in a preseason at Colorado for the blues; though out with a foot injury and in sandals, he came out for the warm up; on the sly .Moysey continually berated him for passing, shooting and aiming long shots at the referee doing his pre-game stretches. Terrific will to win. A great blue who made the most of his talents.
Peter Mills
36 Posted 29/03/2019 at 21:13:30
For me, Tim comes into the John McFarlane “favourite but not necessarily the best” category.

I absolutely loved watching him play for us. I can’t remember a game when he didn’t get hurt, or hurt an opponent. He once went for a bounce-ball in front of where I was sitting and took out his opponent and the referee.

I was at the Etihad on the day when we had no forwards - he played up front on his own, ran himself stupid, could barely move for the last 10 minutes, but popped up with a last minute winner.

A fantastic character and player. Yes, he had his limitations, but I reckon he would have been embraced into any Everton squad I have seen since the early 60s - they would all have recognised a comrade-in-arms.

Terry White
37 Posted 29/03/2019 at 22:12:14
Peter (#36), I echo all you have said. Tim was fiercely passionate about playing for Everton and for his country. He never gave less than 100% when playing for both. As you correctly say, he may not have been the "best" but he was always the first name you would want on your team sheet.
Karl Masters
38 Posted 30/03/2019 at 00:10:24
The only Everton player who I’ve ever bothered to put on the back of a shirt.

Definitely my favourite player of the 21st Century, his attitude has always been spot on and he loves Everton. He doesn’t forget Millwall,who gave him his big break, either and he got them to an FA Cup Final too. There’ll be many tributes to him
In South London today.

A true Evertonian and I agree he’d be worth a coaching role with us now.

Jason Broome
39 Posted 30/03/2019 at 00:47:41
Legend who defied logic.

Not the tallest but his positional awareness made him one the best headers of the ball in the game.

I couldn't define his best position all I know is that he had to play, and when he did he gave his all, our current squad would learn a lot from this team's spirit.

A charismatic leader who made us look cool. Thank you for the memories and the passion Tim. No offence Marco but one day I would love to see Arteta as manager and Cahill his number 2.

Bob Parrington
40 Posted 30/03/2019 at 05:35:40
Tim Cahill, I wish you the very very best for your future. You have been a hero for my beloved Everton(since 1953) and for Soccer Australia, which I follow passionately since migrating in 1986. Besides the great things in the limelight for which we all know you, thanks for the special things like your youth soccer clinics here in Australia and your passion to get things done!

Maybe, one day, we will see you don the Everton blue again but then as manager. Who knows?

Eddie Dunn
41 Posted 30/03/2019 at 07:12:53
He was much better technically than some on here are giving him credit for. I can imagine he will make a super coach because as well as being such a fighter, he has worked hard to stay fit for all of this time and his happy demeanor and natural charisma suggests that he would create a happy working environment.
Tony Abrahams
42 Posted 30/03/2019 at 07:38:10
Little Timmy Cahill, heart of a lion, and possibly the most self taught footballer, in this modern era?
Derek Thomas
43 Posted 30/03/2019 at 07:55:50
Him and Arteta were thick as thieves on and off field, I can see that translating into a decent coaching team
Steve Carter
44 Posted 30/03/2019 at 09:05:24
In my view, the best Everton player of the Premier League era, and, if that be so, one of our best ever given the gulf in quality between between the PL and the old First Division.
Stephen Brown
45 Posted 30/03/2019 at 09:14:26
You’ve got to love Cahill! 100% attitude at all times!

We really missed the boat not tapping more into the Aussie market as they love him !! Same applies to Tim Howard and Landon Donavan in US and Pienaar during SA World Cup! We missed a trick there !!

Rob Dolby
46 Posted 30/03/2019 at 11:28:19
Left foot, right foot, great in the air, worked his socks off, scored goals in big games, scored goals in world cup finals, didn't care about reputations a leader on and off the pitch, had the best attitude of any player I have seen at Goodison.

If as some mention on this thread are the qualities of a limited player then let's buy as many of them as possible and start winning things.

Kase Chow
47 Posted 30/03/2019 at 12:25:25
Loved him

The word is over used but he definitely falls into modern day legend for me

Jay Wood

48 Posted 30/03/2019 at 13:48:11
Picking up on Stephen Brown's post @ 45 about missing the boat by not tapping into the Aussie market more (and others, such as Tim Howard and Landon Donavan in the US and Pienaar in South Africa), there's an interesting related piece on the subject currently on the BBC site.


Apparently, struggling Espanyol in the Spanish La Liga signed a Chinese player Wu Lei in January who has done well. As a result, their live TV games in China draw audiences of 25 million people.

To put that into context, many Premier League games attract a live British TV audience of around 500,000 - a mere one-fiftieth, 2%, of the number of Chinese TV spectators who watch Espanyol games.

Now different times and different marketing opportunities, but when you think that as long ago as 2002 a Chinese firm Keijan became our shirt sponsors, you do wonder if we exploited raw markets as well as we might have down the years.

Part of the Keijan deal was taking two high profile Chinese players on loan, Li Tie (a very tidy midfielder who I personally rated, signed on a permanent deal by Moyes) and Li Weifeng (a central defender who didn't pull up any trees, but to this day remains China's most capped player).

Li Tie got unlucky with injuries but he was regarded as China's 'David Beckham' at the time, their most high profile player.

How big a following did he have? When Everton played Manchester City on New Year’s Day 2003, a world record (at the time) TV audience of 360 million people followed the game.

If you read the linked piece, it discusses tapping into huge audiences as China offers is part of a long-term strategy La Liga has to overhaul the PL as world football's most lucrative league.

To a degree it is already happening with many a club having close ties with other clubs on every continent on the globe, but I envisage a time when clubs sign and play a player to monetize the massive online and TV audience that will tune in to watch a national player from their country.

Clarence Yurcan
49 Posted 30/03/2019 at 14:09:29
Jay, all good points. As a US Toffee, they should have marketed the Timmy Howard connection, especially as his fame really grew here during the '10 and '14 World Cups. It's a rarity I see another person on the streets of New York wearing an Everton short, but there's countless Arsenal's, Chelsea's even I see more Celtic than Everton.
Ray Roche
50 Posted 30/03/2019 at 16:09:24

I mentioned quite recently on ToffeeWeb that, at the time we signed Li Tie, he had the biggest fan club in the world, or so I read at the time. Yet another lost opportunity as you say.

Liam Reilly
51 Posted 30/03/2019 at 16:27:33
ive been supporting Everton for over 40 years and I'd rank TC as my favourite footballer.

Was close to playing for Ireland too apparently but his gpal record for Australia is outstanding

Pity he never claimed any silverware with th e club.

Ian Riley
52 Posted 30/03/2019 at 20:54:53
Thank you Tim for the hard work and and belief you gave the club when Wayne Rooney moved to united. You came in and told the media Everton football club are bigger than any one player.

I hope you go into coaching/management as your hunger and desire as a player will set you up for this role. One day at Everton I hope.

Thanks again.

Peter Roberts
53 Posted 30/03/2019 at 23:59:54
Best word to describe Tim Cahill is “nuisance”. Lovely player to have on your team for effort and heart alone, a nightmare for the opposition.

Definitely a big-game player: how many goals did he score against the Top 4 (& the RS). Some outstanding technically exquisite goals as well in his career for both club and country (the goal against the Netherlands was a copycat of a RVP goal for United which the media waxed lyrical about for weeks).

Enjoy coaching team. Hope to see you in the home dugout at Bramley Moore at some point

Ernie Baywood
54 Posted 31/03/2019 at 03:37:41
Deserves his standing with us, with Millwall and with Australia. The fact he's a favourite son to so many tells you something about him.

My abiding memory is a strange one. I vividly remember him leading the team to press away to Man City with us 0-1 up. Everyone listened to him and he controlled the team's performance. A proper leader on the pitch.

That and his performance in a 3-1 win at Villa Park that I still think is the best I've seen us play since the glory years.

Good luck Timmy!

Terry White
55 Posted 31/03/2019 at 04:13:59
Peter (#53), Van Persie scored a similar goal for Arsenal against us at Goodison, equalizing in the last minute after we led from our centre forward on the night scoring a trademark header, Tim Cahill.
Paul Thompson
56 Posted 31/03/2019 at 15:42:47
The man for the big occasion for Everton and his country. Whatever limitations he had as a player there have been times over the past few years when I have yearned for his passion, leadership qualities and goalscorings. Top bloke too - one of an absolute kind.
Tony Abrahams
57 Posted 01/04/2019 at 20:05:14
Was that the season we came 4th Ernie? I couldn’t see were our next victory was coming from, but Osman, Arteta and Cahill, all played great that day, if my memory is correct.

I remember that Van Persie goal Terry, and I remember leaving Goodison, thinking, I hope we score in the last f...king minute next week.

We did as well, the last minute of extra time, and I finally got to see Everton, score a last minute winner against the other crowd, in a game were Cahill, played up-front, and fought for every single little ball, and Everton won, without a recognised centre-forward, because they showed loads of heart and plenty of guts!

Paul Cherrington
58 Posted 04/04/2019 at 12:59:15
One of my favourite ever Everton players and a true blue legend in my eyes. He always put a shift in, always connected with the fans, and actually a pretty decent player too. I loved seeing his sheer exuberance when playing and those goal celebrations.

Good luck for the future, Tim!

Jem Bir
59 Posted 06/04/2019 at 23:07:19
We remember him as a loyal Blue and a great tenacious player - but he was also very, very talented - not as limited as some portray.

I met him a few times in Aus, and his eyes would light up at the mention of Everton. Lovely guy, lovely player - and a young man with a long life ahead supported by the wishes of Evertonians everywhere.

Ash Moore
60 Posted 08/04/2019 at 04:20:51
"Limited player" scored wonder goal with his wrong foot at the highest level of all, the finals of the world cup.

We could definitely use a few more limited types I think.

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