Philadelphia’s Walter Bahr, Architect of One of the First Major World Cup Upsets, Dies at 91

(Image via Onward State)

Walter Bahr, a former Penn State soccer coach and the midfielder who set up the goal for one of the first major upsets in World Cup history, has died at the age of 91, writes Richard Goldstein for The New York Times.

In the 1950 World Cup in Brazil, the young U.S team did the seemingly impossible, beating England, the tournament’s co-favorites, 1-0.

Bahr, a Philadelphia native, set up the only goal of the match, when his angled shot toward England’s far post that was redirected into the net by forward Joe Gaetjens.

“It was pathetic to see the cream of English players beaten by a side most amateur players at home would have beaten,” the English newspaper The Daily Graphic wrote at the time.

When he retired from playing, Bahr became a successful soccer coach at Temple, then Penn State.

He was named collegiate coach of the year by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America in 1979 and is a member of the United Soccer Coaches Hall of Fame and the National Soccer Hall of Fame.

Read more about Walter Bahr’s life in The New York Times by clicking here.

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