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  Page Last Updated 12 June 2015

United States of America


256 vs. Chile
258 vs. Spain

Thursday, 29 June 1950
World Cup 1950 Finals First Phase Pool Two, Match Four

USA 1 England 0 [1-0]

Match Summary
USA Squad
England Squad

Estádio Raimundo Sampaio, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil
Attendance: 10,151;
Kick-off: 6.00pm BRT, 10.00pm BST

USA - Joe Gaetjens (headed in diverting a Bahr 25-yard shot 38)
Results 1946-1950

England won toss and kicked-off. ? minutes (? & ?).


Match Summary





Referee (black) - Generoso Dattilo
x (-), Italy.

Linesmen - Charles de la Salle, France and Giovanni Galeati, Italy.

  Goal Attempts  
  Attempts on Target  
  Hit Bar/Post  
  Corner Kicks Won  
  Offside Calls Against  
  Fouls Conceded  

USA Team



No official ranking system established;
ELO rating 40th to 30th
Colours: White jerseys with blue v-necked collar/cuffs and red sash, blue shorts with white side trim, blue socks with white hoops around calf.
Capt: Ed McIlvenny Manager:
Coach: William Jeffrey
Walter John Giesler, 39 (6 September 1910)
USA Lineup
1 Borghi, Frank 25 9 April 1925 G St. Louis Simpkins 8 GA
3 Keough, Harry J. 22 15 November 1927 RB St. Louis McMahon    
17 Maca, Joseph A. 29 28 September 1920
in Brussels, Belgium
LB Brooklyn Hispano 2 0
14 McIlvenny, Edward J. 25 21 October 1924
in Greenock, Scotland
RHB Philadelphia Nationals 2 0
4 Colombo, Charles M. 29 20 July 1920
in Lincoln, England
CHB St. Louis Simpkins    
6 Bahr, Walter A. 23 1 April 1927 LHB Philadelphia Nationals    
7 Wallace, Francis 27 15 July 1922 OR St. Louis Simpkins 6 2
8 Pariani, Virgino P. 22 21 February 1928 IR St. Louis Simpkins 4 1
18 Gaetjens, Joseph E. 26 19 March 1924
in Port-au-Prince, Haiti
CF Brookhattan 2 1
10 Souza-Benavides, John 29 12 July 1920 IL Ponta Delgada    
11 Souza-Neto, Edward 28 22 September 1921 OL Ponta Delgada    



team notes:

Although Walter Bahr was the regular US captain, McIlvenny was captain for this match because he was British.
2-3-5 Borghi -
Keough, Maca -
McIlvenny, Colombo, Bahr -
Wallace, Pariani, Gatjens,
J.Souza, E.Souza.


Age 25.9 Appearances/Goals - -


England Team



No official ranking system established;
ELO rating 2nd
Colours: The 1950 away uniform - Royal blue collared short-sleeved jerseys, white shorts, black socks with white tops.
Capt: Billy Wright, sixteenth captaincy Manager:
Selector: Arthur Drewry
Walter Winterbottom, 37 (31 March 1913), appointed director of coaching in September 1946, and team manager in May 1947;
31st match, W 23 - D 3 - L 5 - F 102 - A 32.

announced Wednesday, 28 June.
England Lineup
  Williams, Bert F. 30 31 January 1920 G Wolverhampton Wanderers FC 9 9 GA
2 Ramsey, Alfred E. 30 22 January 1920 RB Tottenham Hotspur FC 7 0
3 Aston, John 28 3 September 1921 LB Manchester United FC 16 0
4 Wright, William A. 26 6 February 1924 RHB

Wolverhampton Wanderers FC

31 2
5 Hughes, Lawrence 26

2 March 1924


Liverpool FC

2 0
6 Dickinson, James W. 25 24 April 1925 LHB

Portsmouth FC

9 0
7 Finney, Thomas 28 5 April 1922 OR/IR

Preston North End FC

27 18
8 Mannion, Wilfred J. 32 16 May 1918 IR/IL Middlesbrough FC 21 10
9 Bentley, T.F. Roy 26 17 May 1924 CF/OR

Chelsea FC

6 2
10 Mortensen, Stanley H. 29 26 May 1921 IL/CF Blackpool FC 20 20
11 Mullen, James 27 6 January 1923 OL

Wolverhampton Wanderers FC

6 2



team notes:

This is Billy Wright's record 31st consecutive appearance.
First World Cup defeat, first World Cup goal conceded, first World Cup match without scoring.
Due to inadequate changing facilities, England arrived on the team bus already kitted out.
3-2-5 Williams -
Ramsey, Hughes, Aston -
Wright, Dickinson -
Finney, Mannion, Bentley, Mortenson, Mullen.
second half: Bentley, Finney, Mortensen, Mannion, Mullen


Age 27.9 Appearances/Goals 14.0 4.9


    Match Report by Mike Payne
     Match Report by Norman Giller

   A deflected shot from Haitian-born centre-forward Larry Gaetjens eight minutes before half-time gave the United States a victory that caused a shock that could have been measured on the Richter scale. England hit the woodwork three times, and what seemed a certain face-saving goal from a Ramsey free-kick in the closing minutes was miraculously saved by the diving goalkeeper Borghi, a professional baseball catcher. Another Ramsey free-kick had earlier found the back of the net, but the referee whistled for an infringement. England spent eighty-five per cent of the game in the American half but finished up the losers. Nobody could have felt more frustrated than Stanley Matthews, who sat watching impassively from the sidelines. The goal-scoring hero Gaetjens was later reported to have died in an Haitian jail after helping to organise a guerrilla movement against the island's dictator, 'Papa' Doc Duvalier. His name will live on in football history. The game was played on a cramped, narrow pitch that meant England were unable to make full use of their strength down the wings.  England had twenty shots to the vital one by the United States. Even their goal was a freakish affair. Bert Williams had a high centre covered, but Gaetjens ducked and the ball glanced off the back of his head and into the net. Even Alf Ramsey, who used to be expressionless throughout a game, threw his arms up and looked to the sky when his perfect free-kick was somehow saved by their unorthodox goalkeeper. Winterbottom had wanted to play Matthews in the second game against the United States, and Sir Stanley Rous argued the case for him with the chairman of the selectors, a Grimsby fish merchant called Arthur Drewry, who had been appointed the sole selector for the World Cup. "My policy is that I never change a winning team," the dogmatic Drewry said  dismissively. On one of the blackest days in English football history, England were beaten by the United States with Stanley Matthews among the spectators. It was like leaving Wellington on the bench at Waterloo.  It has been wrongly reported that the United States was made up of a team that came via Ellis Island. But all but three of the side were American-born.

Source Notes

Original newspaper reports
Rothman's Yearbooks
Mike Payne's England: The Complete Post-War Record (Breedon Books Publishing Company, Derby, U.K., 1993)
Clive Leatherdale's England's Quest For The World Cup (Methuen London Ltd, London, 1984)

Norman Giller
, Football Author