Thomas Cahill (soccer)

Thomas W. Cahill (December 25, 1864 - September 29, 1951) was an American athlete, coach and businessman who is best remembered as one of the founding fathers of American soccer. [cite book |last=Wangerin |first=Dave |authorlink=Dave Wangerin |title=Soccer in a Football World: The Story of America's Forgotten Game |publisher=WSC Books |date=2006 |pages=176 |isbn=0954013476]

Early life

Thomas Cahill was born in New York City, New York, but moved to St. Louis, Missouri in 1871. He attended St. Louis University and built a reputation as one of the pre-eminent amateur athletes in the country. Originally favoring running and baseball, he became interested in soccer after witnessing a game involving a team visiting from Toronto.

Establishing soccer in the United States

Cahill returned to the east coast, settling in Newark, New Jersey in 1910. It was there that he decided to establish a national governing body for soccer. He traveled to Stockholm, Sweden in 1912 to attend the FIFA annual congress with the intention of gaining recognition for the American Amateur Football Association, a group he co-founded. This attempt failed, though he ultimately achieved his goal when he formed the United States Football Association, [cite book |last=Dumaux |first=Sally A. |authorlink=Sally A. Dumaux |title=King Baggot: A Biography and Filmography of the First King of the Movies |publisher=McFarland & Company |date=2002 |pages=136 |isbn=0786413506] [cite book |last=Kirsch |first=George B. |authorlink=George B. Kirsch |title=Encyclopedia of Ethnicity and Sports in the United States |publisher=Greenwood Press |date=2000 |pages=25 |isbn=0313299110] which would later become the United States Soccer Federation. He served three separate terms as the Executive Secretary of the USFA; 1913-1921, 1923-1924 and a final term in 1928. [cite book |last=Allaway |first=Roger |authorlink=Roger Allaway |title=The Encyclopedia of American Soccer History |publisher=Scarecrow Press |date=2001 |pages=411 |isbn=0810839806] In 1921 Cahill was instrumental in forming the American Soccer League, which was the first serious attempt to establish a professional league in the United States. He served as the organization's secretary in its early years.

National team coach

In 1916 he became the first coach of the United States men's national soccer team, taking a team for a tour of Scandinavia.

Later life

Cahill was enshrined in the National Soccer Hall of Fame in 1950. He died the next year in South Orange, New Jersey.


External links

* [ NSHOF Bio]

NAME= Cahill, Thomas W.
SHORT DESCRIPTION=American athlete, coach and businessman
DATE OF BIRTH=December 25, 1864
PLACE OF BIRTH=New York City, New York, United States
DATE OF DEATH=September 29, 1951
PLACE OF DEATH=South Orange, New Jersey, United States

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