Alcides Ghiggia

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Alcides Ghiggia
Alcides Ghiggia.jpg
Ghiggia in 2011
Personal information
Full nameAlcides Edgardo Ghiggia Pereyra
Date of birth(1926-12-22)22 December 1926
Place of birth Montevideo, Uruguay
Date of death 16 July 2015(2015-07-16) (aged 88)
Place of death Montevideo, Uruguay
Height 1.69 m (5 ft 7 in)
Playing position Winger
Senior career*
1945–1948 Sud América
1948–1953 Peñarol 169 (26)
1953–1961 Roma 201 (19)
1961–1962 Milan 4 (0)
1962–1967 Danubio 128 (12)
National team
1950–1952 Uruguay 12 (4)
1957–1959 Italy 5 (1)
Teams managed
1980 Peñarol
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Alcides Edgardo Ghiggia Pereyra (pronounced  [ˈɡiddʒa] ; 22 December 1926 – 16 July 2015) was an Italian-Uruguayan football player, who played as a right winger. He achieved lasting fame for his decisive role in the final match of the 1950 World Cup, and at the time of his death exactly 65 years later, he was also the last surviving player from that game.

Association football team field sport

Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a team sport played with a spherical ball between two teams of eleven players. It is played by 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies, making it the world's most popular sport. The game is played on a rectangular field called a pitch with a goal at each end. The object of the game is to score by moving the ball beyond the goal line into the opposing goal.

Uruguay v Brazil (1950 FIFA World Cup) decisive match of the final group stage at the 1950 FIFA World Cup

Uruguay v Brazil was the decisive match of the final group stage at the 1950 FIFA World Cup. The match was played at the Estádio do Maracanã in the then-Brazilian capital of Rio de Janeiro on 16 July 1950. Unlike other World Cups, the 1950 winner was determined by a final group stage, with the final four teams playing in round-robin format, instead of a knockout stage. With Brazil one point ahead of Uruguay going into the match, Uruguay needed a win while Brazil needed only to avoid defeat to claim the title of world champions.



He played for the national sides of both Uruguay and Italy during his career. He also played for the club sides of the Peñarol and Danubio in Uruguay and A.S. Roma and A.C. Milan in Italy.

Uruguay national football team mens national association football team representing Uruguay

The Uruguay national football team represents Uruguay in international association football and is controlled by the Uruguayan Football Association, the governing body for football in Uruguay. The current head coach is Óscar Tabárez. The Uruguayan team is commonly referred to as La Celeste . They have won the Copa América 15 times, the most successful national team in the tournament, the most recent title being the 2011 edition. The team has won the FIFA World Cup twice, including the first World Cup in 1930 as hosts, defeating Argentina 4–2 in the final. They won their second title in 1950, upsetting host Brazil 2–1 in the final match, which received an attendance higher than any football match ever.

Italy national football team mens national association football team representing Italy

The Italy national football team has officially represented Italy in association football since their first match in 1910. The squad is under the global jurisdiction of FIFA and is governed in Europe by UEFA—the latter of which was co-founded by the Italian team's supervising body, the Italian Football Federation (FIGC). Italy's home matches are played at various stadiums throughout Italy, and their primary training ground is located at the FIGC headquarters in Coverciano, Florence.

Peñarol Uruguayan football (sports) club

Club Atlético Peñarol —also known as Carboneros, Aurinegros and (familiarly) Manyas— is a Uruguayan sports club from Montevideo. The name "Peñarol" comes from the Peñarol neighbourhood on the outskirts of Montevideo. Throughout its history the club has also participated in other sports, such as basketball and cycling. Its focus has always been on football, a sport in which the club excels, having never been relegated from the top division.

In 1950, Ghiggia, then playing for Uruguay, scored the winning goal against Brazil in the final match of that year's World Cup (the Maracanazo ). Roberto Muylaert compares the black and white film of the goal with Abraham Zapruder's chance images of the Kennedy assassination in Dallas: he says that the goal and the shot that killed the US President have "the same dramatic pattern ... the same movement ... the same precision of an unstoppable trajectory. They even have the dust in common that was stirred up, here by a rifle and there by Ghiggia's left foot." [1] The match is considered one of the biggest upsets in football history; Ghiggia would later remark that "only three people managed to silence the Maracanã: Frank Sinatra, the Pope, and me." [2]

The Brazil national football team represents Brazil in international men's association football. Brazil is administered by the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF), the governing body for football in Brazil. They have been a member of FIFA since 1923 and member of CONMEBOL since 1916.

Abraham Zapruder was a Ukrainian-born American clothing manufacturer who witnessed the assassination of U.S. President John F. Kennedy in Dallas, Texas on November 22, 1963. He unexpectedly captured the shooting in a home movie while filming the presidential limousine and motorcade as it traveled through Dealey Plaza.

John F. Kennedy 35th president of the United States

John Fitzgerald "Jack" Kennedy, commonly referred to by his initials JFK, was an American politician and journalist who served as the 35th president of the United States from January 1961 until his assassination in November 1963. He served at the height of the Cold War, and the majority of his presidency dealt with managing relations with the Soviet Union. A member of the Democratic Party, Kennedy represented Massachusetts in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate prior to becoming president.

He managed C.A. Peñarol in 1980. [3]

On 29 December 2009, Brazil honoured Ghiggia by celebrating his decisive goal in the 1950 World Cup. Ghiggia returned to Maracanã Stadium almost 60 years later for this honour and planted his feet in a mould to take his place alongside greats including Brazil's Pelé, Portugal's Eusébio and Germany's Franz Beckenbauer on the Maracanã Stadium walk of fame. Ghiggia was very emotional and thanked Brazil for the warm reception and recognition he received even when the game is considered the most disappointing match in Brazilian football history. [4]

Pelé Brazilian retired footballer

Edson Arantes do Nascimento, known as Pelé, is a Brazilian retired professional footballer who played as a forward. He is regarded by many in the sport, including football writers, players, and fans, as the greatest player of all time. In 1999, he was voted World Player of the Century by the International Federation of Football History & Statistics (IFFHS), and was one of the two joint winners of the FIFA Player of the Century award. That same year, Pelé was elected Athlete of the Century by the International Olympic Committee. According to the IFFHS, Pelé is the most successful domestic league goal-scorer in football history scoring 650 goals in 694 League matches, and in total 1281 goals in 1363 games, which included unofficial friendlies and is a Guinness World Record. During his playing days, Pelé was for a period the best-paid athlete in the world.

Eusébio Portuguese association football player

Eusébio da Silva FerreiraGCIH GCM was a Portuguese footballer who played as a striker. Eusébio is considered by many as one of the greatest footballers of all time. During his professional career, he scored 733 goals in 745 matches. Nicknamed the Black Panther, the Black Pearl, or o Rei, he was known for his speed, technique, athleticism and his ferocious right-footed shot, making him a prolific goalscorer. He is considered S.L. Benfica's and the Portugal national team's most renowned player and one of the first world-class African-born players.

Franz Beckenbauer German association football player

Franz Anton Beckenbauer is a German former professional footballer and manager. Early in his playing career he was nicknamed Der Kaiser because of his elegant style, dominance and leadership on the field, and also as his first name "Franz" is reminiscent of the Austrian emperors. He is widely regarded to be one of the greatest players in the history of the sport. A versatile player who started out as a midfielder, Beckenbauer made his name as a central defender. He is often credited as having invented the role of the modern sweeper or libero.

Later years

Ghiggia's family was of Ticinese descent originally from Sonvico. [5]

Sonvico Quarter in Ticino, Switzerland

Sonvico is a quarter of the city of Lugano and former municipality of the Lugano district in the canton of Ticino in Switzerland. On 14 April 2013 the municipality of Sonvico merged into the municipality of Lugano becoming a new neighborhood. The medieval part of Sonvico village consist is an old citadel with a compacted structure full of narrow and intricate lanes.

Ghiggia lived out his last years at his home in Las Piedras, Uruguay. He died on 16 July 2015 in a private hospital in Montevideo at the age of 88. Coincidentally, it was the 65th anniversary of the Maracanazo. [6] At the time of his death, Ghiggia was the oldest living World Cup champion. [7]

Las Piedras, Uruguay City and municipality in Canelones, Uruguay

Las Piedras is a city in the Canelones Department of Uruguay. As of the census of 2011, it is the fifth most populated city of the country.

Ghiggia was the last surviving member from either the Brazilian or Uruguayan squads involved in the historic 1950 World Cup game. [8]






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  1. Bellos, Alex (2005). Futebol The Brazilian Way of Life. Bloomsbury, New York and London.
  2. "How Uruguay broke Brazilian hearts in the 1950 World Cup". BBC News.
  3. "Tripod - Not Available For Download" . Retrieved 19 July 2015.
  4. "Brazil's Tormentor Ghiggia Honoured at Maracana ". The New York Times. 29 December 2009. Retrieved 2009-12-29.[ dead link ]
  5. "Alcides Edgardo Ghiggia (1926)". Repubblica e Cantone Ticino. Archived from the original on 22 July 2015. Retrieved 1 June 2015.
  6. "Falleció Alcides Edgardo Ghiggia" (in Spanish). Ovación. Retrieved 16 July 2015.
  7. "World Cup 2014: Meet Uruguay's Alcides Ghiggia, the man who broke Brazil's heart". 15 June 2014.
  8. Soccerama 01, p162
  9. "Legends". Golden Foot. Archived from the original on 25 September 2015. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  10. "Hall of Fame" (in Italian). A.S. Roma. Retrieved 27 July 2016.
World Cup-winners status
Preceded by
Pietro Rava
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Oldest Living Player
February 22, 2004 July 16, 2015
Succeeded by
Hans Schäfer
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