Born on September 18, 1934, in the Netherlands, Van Alphen left an indelible mark on Australian soccer, leaving behind a legacy that continues to inspire generations. Dick passed away on May 21, 2009, at his home in Hervey Bay, Queensland.

Van Alphen’s journey in soccer began in his native Amsterdam, where he honed his skills with the esteemed Amsterdam team De Volewijckers. However, it was in Australia that he would truly carve his name into the annals of the sport.

In 1960, Van Alphen embarked on a new chapter of his life, immigrating to Australia. His talent on the field quickly captured attention, and he soon found himself donning the jerseys of prominent Australian clubs. From Ringwood Wilhelmina to Melbourne Hakoah and Caulfield City, Van Alphen’s presence enriched the Australian soccer landscape.

In 1963 he became entangled in a conflict over transfer fees between Australia and the Dutch football association (KNVB) who was supported by FIFA. While Dick was ordered to go back to the Netherlands, he refused and stayed. In the end the KNVB dropped their demands and Dick continued with his career in Australia.

Throughout his illustrious career, Van Alphen showcased his prowess as a skilled midfielder, earning accolades and admiration from teammates and opponents alike. His contributions to the Melbourne Hakoah team were particularly noteworthy, culminating in their victory in the 1966 Dockerty Cup, a triumph that etched his name into Australian soccer history.

Beyond his exploits on the field, Van Alphen’s influence extended into the realm of education. He served as a Physical Education Teacher at Caulfield Technical College, embodying the values of discipline and dedication both on and off the pitch.

Van Alphen’s impact reverberated beyond club competitions, as he proudly represented Victoria in various interstate matches. His performances against formidable opponents such as New South Wales, Western Australia, and Northern New South Wales showcased his unwavering commitment to the sport.

However, it was his call-up to the Australian National Team that solidified his status as a soccer icon. Making his debut in 1967 against New Zealand in the Vietnam National Day Soccer Tournament in Saigon, Van Alphen exemplified the spirit of Australian soccer with every appearance. Over the course of his international career, he earned nine coveted caps for the Socceroos, leaving an indelible mark on the national team.

His passion for the beautiful game and his dedication to nurturing the next generation of talent serve as enduring reminders of his enduring legacy.