A US Soccer Legend Gone: RIP Tony DiCicco

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The Women’s Soccer world has lost one of its own. The news broke yesterday morning that Tony DiCicco, former USWNT coach, passed away Monday evening.

Tony DiCicco is a legend in the world of soccer. 

The coach led the women’s National Team from 1994 to 1999 and, to date, is the only one to have teams win both Olympic Gold medals (1996) and the World Cup trophy (1999). But the Olympics and World Cup victories are just the height of DiCicco’s far-reaching influence in American women’s soccer.

He began as the goalkeeping coach for the USWNT in 1991 before taking over as head coach in 1994. Under DiCicco, the WNT accumulated 103 wins, 8 draws, and 8 losses, making him the “winningest” coach in USSF history. Beyond the Senior WNT, DiCicco managed at the youth level and coached the US women’s team that won the U-20 World Cup in 2008, a team that included Alyssa Naeher, Meghan Klingenberg, Kiersten Dallstream, Elli Reed, Becky Edwards, Christine Nairn, Keelin Winters, Alyssa Mautz, Alex Morgan, and Sydney Leroux. All celebrated members of the NSWL and most current members of the USWNT. 

DiCicco has played a huge role in the establishment of domestic women’s soccer in the US. He acted as the founding commissioner for the WUSA (2000-2003), and then, after leaving international coaching, he managed the Boston Breakers from 2009 through 2011, the majority of their time in the WPS. Under DiCicco, the Breakers took 2nd place in the 2010 season, their highest finishing ever as a pro-level team. Throughout, he has served on the USSF’s Technical Advisory board, and dedicated time to improving the state of coaching in soccer for women and girls across the nation. 

 

In the final phase of his long career in women’s soccer, DiCicco worked as a broadcaster for Fox Sports and ESPN, offering commentary for international friendlies and tournaments, including the 2015 Women’s World Cup where he saw many of the women he’d coached previously win the most coveted title in the women’s soccer world. Men and women across the nation and world are familiar with his voice, interpreting the game for them as they watch their favorites play. 

DiCicco joined the National Soccer Hall of Fame in 2012, having been elected to the honor in recognition of his work and success in the sport. But there can, perhaps, be no more fitting memorial and celebration of Tony DiCicco than the numerous testimonials and remembrances being shared across social media today, as former colleagues, players, and fans join together to mourn the loss of one of US Soccer’s biggest stars. 

RIP, Coach DiCicco. You will be missed.