Werner Fricker

Horsham Soccer Association’s home fields are named in memory of Werner Fricker who, as president of the U.S. Soccer Federation, led the bid that brought the 1994 World Cup to the United States. Mr. Werner passed away at the age of 65 on May 30, 2001. Mr. Fricker was born on January 24, 1936, in Karlsdorf, Yugoslavia,moved with his family to Austria at the end of World War Two and emigrated to the United States in 1952. Captain of the United German-Hungarians team of Philadelphia from 1958 to 1969, including the National Amateur Cup winning team of 1965 and the teams defeated in the finals of 1964 and 1970. He also served on the executive committee of CONCACAF and was chairman of the CONCACAF Finance Committee. Mr. Fricker was also a member of the U.S. team that failed to qualify for the 1964 Olympic soccer tournament, then was elected USSF president in 1984 and helped develop the World Cup bid. The Americans received 10 votes to seven for Morocco and two for Brazil in the vote by FIFA’s executive committee on July 4, 1988. One year later, the United States qualified for its first World Cup appearance since1950. But shortly after the Americans went 0-3 at 1990 tournament in Italy, FIFA decided to back Los Angeles lawyer Alan Rothenberg, who defeated Fricker and became the USSF president in August 1990. Werner was a true U.S. soccer pioneer and will be remembered by everyone involved in the sport as we continue to reap the benefits of his leadership across more than 40 years of involvement at the game’s highest levels, USSF president Robert Contiguglia said. Without his leadership and personal commitment the U.S. would never have earned the right to host the 1994 FIFA World Cup.Mr. Fricker, a real estate developer based in Horsham, was inducted into the National Soccer Hall of Fame in 1992.