Shine On You Kasey Keeper

February 10th, 1998. The Rose Bowl. Pasadena, California, USA. The CONCACAF Gold Cup Semi-Final.

The host country, USA played the then World Cup holders, Brazil.

And beat them.

Sadly at the time because there was zero interest by the American media, (or the public) there are no reports to be found on the match. But it was a… I wouldn’t say a historic match but it was a noteworthy one because only a few months later Brazil went on to appear and lose in the World Cup Final.
(you remember it. Before the match Ronaldo had an “illness”)

Noteworthy too because of the outstanding performances of two journeyman American footballers who appeared in the Premier League. In fact one of them is still there.

The only and winning goal was scored by Preki, who Everton fans will fondly remember from his time with them in the early ’90’s. Also spent a season with Pompey before going back to the USA.

What a shot it was. Outside of the area, on his left peg, keeper didn’t get near it.
– Hey do you know what he’s doing now ? He’s the head coach of Chivas USA.

But this match was remembered more for the goalkeeping heroics of one Kasey Keller. After going a goal down and time running out the Brazilians took up target practice at the USA goal, none of them got in.

After their defeat Romario remarked: “That is the best performance by a goalkeeper I have ever seen. It was an honour to be on the pitch with him.”

— As mentioned I can’t find any reports on this game, but you can watch Preki’s goal here and some highlights here.

The members of the now defunct American band Barcelona (also known as Barcelonadc) watched this match, saw Kasey’s outstanding performance and were inspired to write a song about it…

The band Barcelona

» Barcelona – Kasey Keller

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