37 Facts About Tony Meola


Antonio Michael "Tony" Meola is an American former professional soccer player who played as a goalkeeper.


Tony Meola represented the United States national team at the 1990,1994, and 2002 World Cups.


Tony Meola learned his love for the game from his father, Vincenzo, who played for Italian second division club Avellino before immigrating to the US Meola was All-State both as a goalkeeper and a forward.


Tony Meola had a part in 41 clean sheets and scored 42 goals during his high school career.


In 1999, Meola was named by The Star-Ledger as one of the top ten New Jersey high school soccer players of the 1980s.


Tony Meola not only excelled at soccer, he was a three-sport varsity letterman.


Tony Meola was the captain of the school's basketball team and was named an All-State baseball player in 1987.


The New York Yankees drafted him out of high school, though Tony Meola did not sign a contract with them.


Tony Meola earned first team All American honors both his freshman and sophomore years.


Tony Meola won the Hermann Trophy as a freshman in 1988 and the MAC Award as a sophomore in 1989.


Tony Meola had signed with the US Soccer Federation before the 1990 FIFA World Cup.


Tony Meola gained his first start when he replaced the injured Perry Digweed and promptly won man of the match honors.


On September 14,1990, Tony Meola was transferred to second division club Watford before moving back to the US, which he did when he was unable to renew his work permit due to his inability to gain first team time with Watford.


In 1991, Tony Meola played for the Fort Lauderdale Strikers of the American Professional Soccer League.


Tony Meola attempted to become a placekicker with NFL's New York Jets in July 1994 but didn't pass the try-outs and was cut.


In February 1995, Tony Meola joined the Long Island Rough Riders for its upcoming 1995 USISL season.


Tony Meola spent three weeks in February 1996 training with Italian club Parma.


Tony Meola did not win the MLS Goalkeeper of the Year Award, however; the honor went to Mark Dodd.


Tony Meola was traded to the Kansas City Wizards in 1999, but missed most of his first year in the midwest due to injury.


In 2000, Tony Meola was named League MVP, Goalkeeper of the Year, and MLS Cup MVP as he led Kansas City to the championship.


Tony Meola set a new league record by recording 16 shutouts.


Tony Meola was voted into the 2000 MLS All Star Game playing the first half in goal, and made a cameo in the 2nd half up top as a forward.


Tony Meola played for the Wizards through the 2004 MLS season.


Bo Oshoniyi took over the goalkeeping position, although Tony Meola recorded a shutout in the Wizards' US Open Cup final win over the Chicago Fire, and Tony Meola was not asked back for next season, instead stuck with Oshoniyi as the starting goalkeeper.


Tony Meola was named to the MLS All-Time Best XI after the season.


Tony Meola signed a contract in summer 2007 with the New Jersey Ironmen, an indoor soccer expansion team based in Newark, NJ that played in the Major Indoor Soccer League.


Tony Meola made his US national team debut on June 10,1988, against Ecuador.


At the time, David Vanole was the US starter, but he and Tony Meola had traded goalkeeper duties over the previous month as Vanole fought USSF on a contract dispute and attempted to get his burgeoning weight under control.


Roma, but Tony Meola was injured in a freak accident when a ball struck his head during practice.


Tony Meola remained the keeper of choice for the US national team from 1990 through the 1994 FIFA World Cup.


Tony Meola was the third-choice goalkeeper at the 2002 FIFA World Cup behind Friedel and Keller.


On November 24,2015, Tony Meola was hired for his first coaching position in the NASL with the Jacksonville Armada FC.


Tony Meola recorded his first managerial victory in the club's home opener against Miami FC on April 15,2016.


Tony Meola was the original drummer for New Jersey's cover band Mushmouth and still plays with the band on occasions.


In 2012, Tony Meola was inducted into the National Soccer Hall of Fame.


Jon Tony Meola was a member of the University of Virginia baseball team during the 2016 season, before transferring to Stetson University.


Tony Meola commentated MLS games for FOX when their lead commentators weren't available.