photos relating to Vince GrellaMeet the Family - Vince Grella

Maria Grella describes her thoughts on their first family holiday, to watch Australia in the World Cup in Germany in 2006...

"There will be no Grellas left in Australia."

"I'd try to get Vince to do his homework; he'd be out kicking a ball on the road or against the fence. The neighbours would complain about the squashed flowers."

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Maria & Antonio Grella »

Like many of our favourite Aussie football stars, Vince has a migrant background. The Grella family (pictured above) originally came from Italy.

Socceroo Vince Grella was born on 5 October 1979. He was the youngest player to enter the Victorian Institute of Sport, aged just 14 years. He first played for Australia against England in 2003 and currently plays with Parma (Italy).

Photo: Springfield City under sevens soccer team, 1984. Vince, in the black top, was only five.

Meet Maria and Antonio Grella

Trophy: Olyroo Challenge Cup, awarded to Australia's under 23s team in 1998.

Maria: I came out with my parents, my father had migrated a couple of years before. I came over with my mum and younger sister.

Antonio: I liked it very much here, it was easy for me to adjust very quickly, I mixed with everybody.

Maria: I was 19, got engaged at 18 and married at 19, 34 years later and we are still together, putting up with each other. We have four children, Pasqualle, the oldest, David, then Vince, Vincenzo is his full name and then Emma. The three of them were going off to school always with a soccer ball between them, they always made sure they were the boys took a soccer ball to school with them.

Maria: I would try to get Vince to do his homework he'd be out on the road. Across the fence the neighbours would be complain their flowers were being trampled on.

When they are little around 7 or 8 they are all enthusiastic, then you get to that stage are we going to study or play sport, he was more inclined to go out and play sport, even though he got through school and got his HSC. He was more dedicated to his sport.

Maria: On the whole we are quiet parents.

Antonio: I'm a quiet parent.

Maria: I used to be noisier when they were younger, I used to scream a lot. I've calmed down I've learnt to be quiet. I sit there until the end.

Antonio: So many times on tournament, when ended up in penalties out it's a funny way to end a game. I couldn't watch, even when they were little kids to watch the penalties and they missed a goal, they'd start crying, you'd see your kid crying you'd start crying yourself too. I'd always turn my face to the other side until they finished the penalties

Maria: each time their playing is exciting, but in the last year qualifying for the World Cup that's has been the highlight really.


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