He thought he was headed for Tanzania, but ended up in Tasmania.
Steve Darby was raised on old school values in the shadow of the Kop.
He bathed in an outside tub, stood on a milk crate on terraces at Anfield and Goodison Park, and went on to spend five decades in football remaining true to himself - and the players he coached. From Bahrain to Tasmania and many points in between, Steve wanted football to be fun for his players, and for his players to use football to learn more about life.
Along the way, he taught himself Arabic and Malay, dined with sultans and kings, picked up a few medals, upset a few football - and actual - politicians, and became one of the most successful and effective foreign coaches in South East Asia.
His coaching experience includes Devonport City, the Matildas, Sydney Olympic, Johor, Home United, Perak, Thailand FA, Vietnam FA, Fiji FA, Mohun Bagan FC, Manipur, Kelantan, Mumbai City and Laos FA.
Our latest book, The Itinerant Coach - The Footballing Life and Times of Steve Darby
by Antony Sutton is now available from us, good bookstores or Amazon as a paperback or in digital format.