Frank Borghi

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Frank Borghi (born April 9, 1925 in St. Louis, Missouri) is a former American soccer player who earned nine caps at goalkeeper for the United States national team and played in the U.S. team's 1-0 victory over the hugely favored English in the 1950 FIFA World Cup.

Athletic career[edit]

Borghi started his sports career as a professional baseball player, but turned to soccer instead. He chose the position of goalkeeper because he felt he lacked the necessary ball skills to play any other position. In fact, when he was in goal, he never kicked the ball, even for goal kicks (someone else took them); instead, thanks to his arm strength from playing baseball, he always threw the ball after he made a save. He played professionally for St. Louis Simpkins-Ford and helped them win the National Challenge Cup in 1948 and 1950.

He was selected to the U.S. national team in 1949 and played in four World Cup qualifying matches as well as all three games in the 1950 World Cup. Notably, he made several key saves to secure the 1-0 victory over heavily-favored England - still considered one of the greatest upsets in the history of the World Cup. He also appeared for the U.S. in 1954 World Cup qualifying against Mexico. Borghi was inducted into the United States National Soccer Hall of Fame in 1976 along with the rest of his 1950 teammates.

Personal life[edit]

After his retirement from the sport, he became a director of a funeral home in St. Louis until 2003. In January 2004, he and the four other living members of the 1950 World Cup Team (Walter Bahr, Harry Keough, Gino Pariani and John Souza) were recognized as Honorary All-Americans by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America at its annual convention in Charlotte, N.C.

Frank Borghi is interpreted by Gerard Butler in the film The Game of Their Lives.

Documentary[edit]

Borghi was featured in the 2009 soccer documentary A Time for Champions discussing the U.S. upset victory over England in the 1950 World Cup.

References[edit]

  • "Frank Borghi". National Soccer Hall of Fame. Retrieved 2006-09-15. 
  • Beauchesne, Jill. "Frank Borghi". Where Are They Now?. National Soccer Hall of Fame. Retrieved 2006-09-15.