Who Is Walter Pless?


A teacher by profession, but is now in his 38th year as a football writer. Has written for "Soccer Action" (Melbourne), "Australian Soccer Weekly" (Sydney) and "World Soccer" (London), as well as for several Tasmanian newspapers. Currently contributing to "Goal!Weekly" in Melbourne and the Australian magazine "Soccer International". Played for Croatia-Glenorchy, Caledonians, Metro, Rapid and University in Tasmania, as well as in the United States of America. Coached University, Metro and Croatia-Glenorchy.

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Photo:  Gordon Nutt at KGV Park [PlessPix]

The former Arsenal winger, Gordon Nutt, has passed away at Cygnet in Tasmania at the age of 81.

Gordon, who also played for Cardiff City, Coventry City, PSV Eindhoven and Southend United, had suffered ill health in recent years.


Photo:  Gordon Nutt (left) with Australian football icon Johnny Warren at KGV Football House [PlessPix]

He represented the English FA on a tour of the Caribbean in the 1950s.

Gordon made 189 league appearances in England and scored 32 goals.

He was born in South Yardley, Birmingham on 8 November 1932 and passed away in Cygnet yesterday.

He moved from Coventry City to Cardiff City in 1954 for a fee of 12,000 pounds but stayed only a year before being sold to Arsenal.

He made his debut for Arsenal on 24 September 1955 against Sunderland.

Gordon played 51 times for Arsenal and scored 10 goals for the Gunners.

I was first introduced to Gordon in the early 1990s by Dennis McCauley, who was for a brief time, CEO of the Tasmanian Soccer Federation.

Dennis and Gordon ran the very successful and well organised Tasmanian Soccer Schools, based at The Hutchins School in Sandy Bay.

I recall attending a barbecue for Gordon’s birthday when he and his family were living at Old Beach.

Roger Ferguson  -  father of Tilford Zebras goalkeeper, Matthew  -  also attended.  He had just returned from London and presented Gordon with a large framed photograph of a 360 degree view of Highbury, signed by Arsene Wenger and the entire Arsenal squad.

There were many sepia photos outlining Gordon’s football career on the walls of the rooms of Gordon’s house.

Gordon often told me how exciting it was being a footballer in London in the 1950s.

He recalled warmly the rail trips back to London after an away match in Manchester, for example, and the players hitting the nightspots on their return late at night.

Gordon was in the Arsenal team that played Manchester United before a crowd of 63,578 at Highbury on 1 February, 1958.

Manchester United won 5-4 and Gordon had two assists for Arsenal.

It was the last time that people would see that great Manchester United side, the Busby Babes, which included Bobby Charlton and Duncan Edwards and was managed by Matt Busby.

Five days later, the team was destroyed in an air crash in Munich on their way home from a European Cup match in Belgrade.


Photo:  Gordon Nutt at a Clarence United game at KGV Park [PlessPix]

Gordon came to Australia in 1965, where he played for Sydney Croatia and Manly-Warringah before retiring.

He came to Tasmania and ran a television and film lighting business and did some work for the ABC (look for his name in some of the credits) in this field, as well as running his Tasmanian Soccer Schools.

He was assistant director the Australian cult movie, "Stone".

Gordon was always approachable and was ready to offer his knowledge and service to local clubs and coaches.

He was involved with Clarence United for a while and assisted with the coaching of the senior side.

He is survived by his wife Jenny and son Asher.


0 #22 Stanley G Jones 2018-09-23 21:44
remember Gordon from the war years in South Yardley Birmingham,we were in the Bierton Rd School Cricket team,played together in an inter school match held at the Edgebaston cricket ground (which looked pretty rough in 1945)Have a photo of all us dressed in make do Whites.
He was like a little whippet,great speed.Not sure where he got it from,not much to eat in those war years.
0 #21 Sue Huggins. 2015-09-27 12:30
Dear Jenny, So sorry to here of Gordon`s passing, last year. Our hearts go out to you & your family. God bless you & give you the strength you need. Love, Sue & John Huggins. XXX
+2 #20 Gordon Banks 2014-02-28 06:34
One hilarious event when I rang Gordon's place once was the greeting, " Hello. The Nuthouse."

+1 #19 Hunty 2014-02-28 04:02
A similar story to Callan's. Was walking home from school a few years ago in my Man United gear and he stopped to give me a lift. Got chatting and 30 minutes later he'd driven home and got his scrapbook out and started showing me all the old photos. To actually touch and read the last English match programme of the 'Busby Babes' was a great privilege.

Great man and will be missed.
+1 #18 Anonymous 2014-02-27 23:41
Seemed to be one of the few who had walked the walk instead of just talking the talk, unlike a few others floating around the place. Great, genuine accomplishments by this man. Respect.
+5 #17 Zlatko Belanic 2014-02-27 20:04
Warmest Condolences to Jennifer and Asher...An absolut gem of a man ,who was my inspiration in coaching and just being a wonderful humanbeing that you just couldn`t help but like from the day you first meet him.A real privelige to work with at Tasmanian soccer schools and fantastic memories..RIP Gordon......Zla tko Belanic and family
+5 #16 Anonymous 2014-02-27 11:05
A nicer man you would never meet. The game is poorer in his absence.

David Stoddart
+6 #15 GK 2014-02-27 11:02
Sad news , another gone he loved his football and more important coached a lot of youth players , played at a high level . RIP my friend .
+4 #14 Tommy 2014-02-27 06:23
I too had the privilege of being coached by Gordon and being called a daffodil. I actually used a few of things Gordon taught me as recently as last season. His nature and personality stand out though, he really was a genuinely fantastic person.
+7 #13 Mick Trotter 2014-02-27 01:59
Sorry to hear of the passing of Gordon he was a football fanatic and a lovely man.

David Jack I remember you turning a few players inside out in your time ,and I am sure Gordon would have appreciated your kind words .

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