BOBBY KEHOE

Soccer

Born: 1928; St. Louis, Missouri
Died: September 4, 2017
Position: Defender
Played For: US National Team (1965)
Coached: St. Louis Stars (1969-70),US National Team (1972),  Granite City North High School (1973-1983)

 

A graduate from St. Louis University High School in 1947, Bobby Kehoe played on the school’s first soccer team in 1943. After high school, he spent time in the Philadelphia Phillies farm system, but soon returned to soccer.

He earned four caps as captain of the U.S. national team during FIFA World Cup qualifying in 1965 and coached the U.S. national team in 1972. His first game with the national team came in a 2-2 tie with Mexico on March 7, 1965. Kehoe and his teammates then lost to Mexico five days later, defeated Honduras on March 17 and tied them four days later, thus not qualifying for the finals.

In 1969, Kehoe moved from player to coach, becoming the first U.S.-born coach in the NASL in the 1969 and 1970 season when he coached the St. Louis Stars. During his two seasons as head coach, he used rosters of predominantly U.S.-born players, unlike most other coaches in the NASL. In 1972, the U.S. Soccer Federation hired Kehoe as coach of the U.S. national team.

He became coach of the Granite City North High team from 1973-83, then became the head coach of the Bud Light women’s over-30 team. The Bud team went to the women’s over-30 national championship game every year from 1983 to 1988. During those years, Kehoe also served as the director of coaching for the Busch Soccer Club.

Kehoe was inducted into the St. Louis Soccer Hall of Fame in 1983, the Illinois High School Soccer Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 1989 and the National Soccer Hall of Fame in 1989.

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