Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
OBITUARY: Bob Kap (1923-2010)
by Paul Kennedy, March 19th, 2010 1:31AM

MOST READ
TAGS:  obituary

MOST COMMENTED

Bob Kap, who died on Sunday at the age of 87, is best known as the godfather of soccer-style kickers, but he was also an American soccer pioneer, who took the Dallas Tornado on the longest tour in the history of soccer -- six months with games in 19 countries on five continents, including two games in Vietnam at the height of the Vietnam War.

The tour was supposed to prepare the Tornado for the inaugural NASL season, but it finished the '68 season with a 2-26-4 record and Kap resigned as coach.

Of the 18 players -- all but one foreigners decked out in cowboy hats -- only Englishman Mike Renshaw would go on to play with the Tornado when it grew in later years. But the team of no-names still drew crowds of upward of 100,000 a game at a time when few teams traveled the world.

The trip began in dramatic fashion when the players missed their flight from Athens to Cyprus, because they were sightseeing. The plane they were supposed to be on was blown up in mid-air in a terrorist attack.

Soccer-style placekickers were already in the NFL when Kap went to the Dallas Cowboys and introduced them to Austrian Toni Fritsch.

He would go on to bring eight other European soccer players to the NFL as a placekickers.

A decade after his involvement in the NASL, Kap made international headlines when he formed a syndicate and tried to acquire Argentina star Ricardo Villa. It wasn't like today when South Americans move frequently abroad.

Kap's bid failed, and Villa and Argentine teammate Ozzie Ardiles then headed to England to play for Tottenham.

In later years, Kap became an accomplished painter. His works hang in the NFL Hall of Fame.



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
Where to Watch European Soccer    
The new European club season has started up. Here are places Soccer America readers recommend where ...
Soccer America Men's Top 25 Scoreboard    
[ROUNDUP: Friday] No. 7 New Mexico had to settle for a 1-1 tie with Drexel before ...
Wooten scores second late winner in two weeks    
[AMERICANS ABROAD] German-American Andrew Wooten scored his second game-winning goal in two games to lead Sandhausen ...
Dempsey teams up again with XO    
[VIDEO PICK: Music] The FIFA 15 release party in New York featured its cover boy, Clint ...
New and the old square off in semifinals    
[USL PRO: Semifinals] Two first-year clubs -- Sacramento Republic FC and La Galaxy II -- and ...
Attention on battle for first place -- and fourth    
[NASL: Fall Week 11] First place will be on the line Saturday when the San Antonio ...
Nasco nightmare gives RSL Rocky Mountain Cup    
[MLS: Friday] Joe Nasco, the former Georgia police officer who made his MLS debut this summer ...
Riquelme still brilliant at 36     
[VIDEO PICK: Golazo] Argentine playmaker Juan Roman Riquelme has always been one of the most delightful ...
What They're Saying: Danny Murphy    
"Basically, half his finger was off and you could see his tendon. Glass shattered -- it ...
Abbott is 'incredibly impressed' with Sac scene    
[MLS SPOTLIGHT] How does Sacramento stack up? MLS president Mark Abbott said he's not about to ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives