It’s a known fact among only select soccer circles, but Philadelphia has a rich – and deep – soccer history on the world stage. During the month that is the FIFA World Cup, philadelphiaunion.com in conjunction with Philly Soccer Page will highlight one player from either the Greater Philadelphia region or that has ties to the Union that has been a part of the world’s greatest sporting event.
Earlier this week, we kicked things off with former U.S. men's national team head coach Robert Millar. Next up is a brief tale of Millar's prized possession in the 1930 FIFA World Cup, forward and fellow Philly native Bert Patenaude.
Bert Patenaude played with the Philadelphia Field Club in 1928, the Philadelphia German-Americans in 1933-34 and with the Philadelphia Passion in 1936.
According to research from historians, fans, the U.S. Soccer Federation and respected publications such as the Philly Soccer Page, Patenaude remains FIFA’s first player to record a hat trick in World Cup history. Patenaude scored three goals for the United States in its 3-0 victory over Paraguay in Montevideo, Uruguay on July 17, 1930.
According to multiple reports, the official FIFA match sheet showed goals scored by the U.S. in the 10th, 15th and 50th minutes. The goals in the 10th and the 50th were awarded to Patenaude.
Originally, the 15th minute goal was given to Tom Florie. But the goal was changed to Patenaude only within the last decade.
“In his mind and in his heart, he believed that he'd scored three goals,” his son, Bert Jr. told ESPNBoston.com in a 2010 interview.
Two days after Patenaude’s alleged hat trick, Argentina’s Guillermo Stábile scored three goals in a 6-3 defeat of Mexico. For the next 76 years, he was honored by FIFA as the player with the first World Cup hat trick.
“He wasn't the type of man who would've taken credit for something that he didn't do,” Bert Jr. told ESPNBoston.com. “He would have told them from the very beginning.”
Patenaude was born on Nov. 4, 1909 and died on his birthday in 1974. He was inducted into the U.S. Soccer Hall of Fame three years earlier in 1971.
Multiple reports stated that Patenaude scored 114 goals in 158 matches from 1928-31 in the original American Soccer League. He won three U.S. Open Cup titles.
And his legacy will be cemented in Philadelphia soccer forever.