June 29 in Sports History: US Soccer team shocks England

In 1950: On the day the United States decided to enter into the Korean conflict, an unheralded team made up of dishwashers, mailmen and hearse drivers pulled off one of the greatest upsets in sports history. The United States soccer team defeated mighty England, 1-0 in a World Cup match in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Having been outscored 45-2 in matches leading up to the Cup and following a 3-1 loss to Spain in their first match in group play, the Americans scored on a header by Joe Gaetjens (the dishwasher) in the 37th minute for a 1-0 lead. The British, 3 to 1 favorites to win the cup and the undisputed best team in the world (and resting their best player), could not beat goalkeeper Frank Borghi (the hearse driver) and the 500 to 1 shot United States pulled the shocker in front of a grand total of one American media member (a St. Louis sports writer who was vacationing in Brazil). The United States could not carry the momentum into the next match and bowed out of the World Cup with a 5-2 loss to Chile three days later. They would not win another match until 1994. A book called The Game of Their Lives and a movie of the same name tells the entire story of one of sports most shocking upsets.

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