The Soccer Hall of Fame Announces 2011 Inductees

Mar 03, 2011, 13:15 ET from The Ontario Soccer Association

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VAUGHAN, ON, March 3 /PRNewswire/ - The Soccer Hall of Fame is pleased to welcome in the 2011 Induction Class, comprised of four Players, two Builders, a Pioneer Award Recipient, a Team and Organization of Distinction. The 2011 Team of Distinction is the 1979 Vancouver Whitecaps. They defeated the Tampa Bay Rowdies 2-1 before 66,843 fans at Giants Stadium in New York, to claim the Soccer Bowl and NASL Championship. The team also defeated a star-studded New York Cosmos team in the National Conference Final, to reach the Soccer Bowl. The 1979 Vancouver Whitecaps were coached by Tony Waiters and the team in the final included Canadian internationals Bob Lenarduzzi, Bob Bolitho, Carl Valentine and Buzz Parsons along with Alan Ball, John Craven, Phil Parkes, Roger Kenyon, Ray Lewington, Kevin Hector, Whymark and Johnston.

Players

Nick Dasovic - Dasovic earned 62 caps for Canadian Mens National Team. His playing career as a central defender and midfielder included stops in Croatia (Dynamo Zagreb), France (St. Brieux), Sweden (FC Trelleborgs), and Scotland (St. Johnstone). Dasovic's stint with St. Johnstone was a successful one in which he appeared in 137 games from the 1996-97 to the 2001-02 seasons. He also played domestically with Vancouver 86ers and Montreal Impact. Later entered the coaching ranks with the Canadian Olympic Team in 2008, and as an assistant, then head coach with Toronto FC most recently.

Lyndon Hooper - Hooper earned 67 caps for Canadian Mens National Team, scoring three goals. The central-midfielder was a second-team CIAU All-Canadian in 1986 and 1987 at Wilfred Laurier University. He also played professionally in England (Birmingham City) for a season, as well as with Ottawa National Capital Pioneers, Montreal (Supra, Impact), Toronto (Blizzard, Lynx), and Cincinnati Silverbacks. 

Victor Kodelja - Kodelja earned 10 caps for the Canadian Men's National Team, including a 1974 match against Hungary in Budapest, in which he scored a brilliant goal. His long NASL career saw him play for Vancouver, San Antonio, Hawaii, San Jose, Calgary, Toronto, and eventually Chicago where he was a member of the 1984 NASL Championship team. He played in 197 NASL games in total, scoring 17 goals as a first class defender.

Jimmy Nicholl - Nicholl was born in Hamilton, Ontario, and is one of the most successful Canadian-born players in history. In his club career, he made 247 appearances for Manchester United between 1975 and 1981, before playing three seasons with the Toronto Blizzard in the NASL, leading the team to two Soccer Bowl appearances. He also enjoyed success at Glasgow Rangers, where he won three Scottish League Cups and a League title. He also spent time at Sunderland, West Bromwich Albion, Dunfermline Athletic, and Raith Rovers. Internationally, he made 73 appearances for Northern Ireland, including in the 1982 and 1986 World Cup Finals. As a manager, Jimmy was an assistant with Northern Ireland from 1990-93, after being a player-manager at Raith Rovers. He also managed at Milwall and Aberdeen, and currently is the manager of Scottish First Division club Cowdenbeath, who have earned the nickname of "Blue Brazil".

Builders

William "Bill" Hoyle - After becoming a referee in 1957, he became treasurer of Toronto and District Soccer Referees Associaiton, helped found the Eastern Canada Referees Association and later became President of the Ontario Soccer Referees Association. As President of The Ontario Soccer Association from 1979 to 1986, he guided the OSA through the integration of the Youth and Senior Associations. In 1988 he was appointed Chairman of the OSA's Heritage Committee, which became the catalyst for the formation of The Soccer Hall of Fame and Museum under his guidance. 

Rupert "Bert" Goldberger - Came from Vienna, Austria to Edmonton and eventually became the first Technical Director of the Alberta Soccer Association, a position he held for several decades, and then a National Coaching instructor for the Canadian Soccer Association. He coached Canada to a place in the FIFA U-16 finals in Scotland in 1989, and again in Japan in 1993.

Pioneer Award

Len Peto - Born in London England in 1892, died in Vallejo, California in 1985. He helped form the National Soccer League (Canada's first real professional soccer league) in 1926, becoming its first president and holding the position for 10 years. He then became President of the Dominion of Canada Football Association (today's CSA) for four years, and later a National Hockey League Director and Executive for the Montreal Canadiens and Montreal Maroons. His name was engraved on the Stanley Cup in 1944.

Organization of Distinction

Toronto Ulster United -The Club was formed in 1914. They were National Champions in 1925, 1946, and 1951, and Ontario Cup Champions in 1927, 1929, 1937. In 1926 Ulster won the Nathan Straus Cup as champions of the International League, a competition played between U.S. and Canadian clubs. The club also played in international friendlies against Sparta Prague, Liverpool, and Manchester United over the years.

/NOTE TO EDITORS: Media Assets accompanying this story are available as follows:

Photo:  http://smr.newswire.ca/media/articles/1130/nick-dasovic.jpg

Photo : http://smr.newswire.ca/media/articles/1130/lyndon-hooper.jpg

Photo : http://smr.newswire.ca/media/articles/1130/jimmy-nicholl.jpg

Photo : http://smr.newswire.ca/media/articles/1130/bill-hoyle.jpg

SOURCE The Ontario Soccer Association