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Football at the 1928 Summer Olympics

Football at the 1928 Summer Olympics
1928 Summer Olympics stamp of the Netherlands football.jpg
Football at the 1928 Summer Olympics on a stamp of the Netherlands
Tournament details
Host countryThe Netherlands
DatesMay 27 June 13
Teams17 (from 5 confederations)
Venue(s)2 (in 1 host city)
Final positions
Champions Uruguay
Runners-up Argentina
Third place Italy
Fourth place Egypt
Tournament statistics
Goals scored16
Top scorer(s)Argentina Domingo Tarasconi
(11 goals)

Football was one of the tournaments at the 1928 Summer Olympics. It was won by Uruguay against Argentina, and was the last Olympic football tournament before the inception of the FIFA World Cup, which was held for the first time in 1930.[1]


Olympic Stadium Old Stadion
Capacity: 33,005 Capacity: 29,787
Olympic Stadium Amsterdam 1928 (large).jpg Nederland—Frankrijk 2 april 1923.jpg


Up to 1928 the Olympic football tournament had represented the World Championship of football; (and understandably so: the 1920 (14), 1924 (22) and 1928 tournaments (17) all had greater participation than that of the first World Cup in 1930). Yet this presented a significant problem for the governing body, FIFA, since the tournament, though organised and run by FIFA, was an event subject to the ethical foundation that underpinned the Olympic movement.

That all Olympic competitors had to maintain an amateur status had, for a length of time, been a constraint that football was unable to uphold. Increasingly, FIFA had sought to appease those nations that required concessions in order that players could participate in the Olympics. This required there to be an acceptance that irregular payment could be made to players by national associations: the so-called 'broken time payments' by which loss of pay and expenses would be met. On February 17, 1928 the four 'home' associations of the United Kingdom, meeting in Sheffield voted unanimously to withdraw from FIFA in opposition to the manner in which the governing body was seeking to dictate on such matters and, as was noted 'that (the four Associations) be free to conduct their affairs in the way their long experience has shown them to be desirable'.[2]

For Henri Delaunay, President of the French Football Federation the writing was on the wall; FIFA must wait no longer to put into practice an international tournament, freed from ideological shackles. In 1926 he stated, at the FIFA Conference: 'Today international football can no longer be held within the confines of the Olympics; and many countries where professionalism is now recognised and organised cannot any longer be represented there by their best players'.[3] The day before the tournament began, on May 26, 1928 (Portugal played Chile; Belgium played Luxembourg in the opening games) the FIFA congress in Amsterdam presided over by Jules Rimet, voted that a new FIFA World Cup tournament be organised in 1930 and be open to all member nations. Italy, Sweden, the Netherlands, Spain and Uruguay would all lodge applications to host the event.


The Egyptian squad

By 1926, three years had passed since the British Associations had asked FIFA to accept their definition of what an amateur player was; FIFA had refused. The Rome Convention was called to try to coax the British and Danes back into the fold; it proved only to distance them. Switzerland, a nation that favoured broken time payments suggested: It is not allowed to pay compensation for broken time, except in some well-circumscribed cases, to be fixed by each National Association. This challenge to the centralised authority of FIFA was disputed by the Football Association. In 1927 FIFA asked the Olympic committee to accept the concept of broken time payments as an overriding condition for the competing members. The British Associations consequently withdrew from the Olympiad and a few months later withdrew from FIFA (Association Football (1960))

Uruguay were considered to be the strongest side with the Argentinians shading the advantage between the two. Upon returning home in 1924 Uruguay had ceded to a request to play a disbelieving Argentina in a two staged contest; Argentinian fans hurling missiles at Jose Leandro Andrade to the extent that he had with adopt a position deep in-field. The Argentinians won.[4] Uruguay, the defending Olympic champions, once again sent a side made up, predominantly, by the personnel of their two biggest clubs: Nacional and, to a lesser degree, Peñarol.

The Europeans

The competition was more competitive than the 1924 edition. Ten European nations (17 in all) had made the journey to the Netherlands for the competition. The Italians had been defeated only twice in three years. The Italian coach, Augusto Rangone, had been a beneficiary of the national federation's decision in 1923 to permit subsidies to cover player's lost wages. For two years his forward line had remained comparatively the same: Adolfo Baloncieri, Virgilio Levratto; even the loss of the Argentinian-Italian Julio Libonatti before the tournament was made good by the inclusion of Angelo Schiavio. Spain had been defeated once since the last Olympic Games. After the first game, however, they lost their experienced captain Pedro Vallana.

Final tournament

Uruguay immediately dispatched the hosts, the Netherlands, 2-0 in front of 40,000 people with none of the controversy that had surrounded their previous encounter at the 1924 Summer Olympics. The game was controlled by Jean Langenus, a performance which was recognised. Meanwhile, the Argentinians had little difficulty against the United States winning 11-2. Elsewhere Germany were defeated by the Uruguayans 4-1. In another quarter-final the Italians encountered Spain. In the first game they reached a tie with the Spanish fighting back from a half time deficit to force a replay. In the replay three days later the Azzurri scored four without response before the break. Rangone kept faith in a largely unchanged team. Spain, on the other hand, had gambled by making five changes to Italy's two. Portugal, after wins over Chile (4-2) and Yugoslavia (2-1)[5] lost to Egypt 2-1. The African side advanced to a semi-final tie against Argentina.


Round of 16Quarter-finalsSemi-finalsFinal
30 May - Amsterdam
 Uruguay 2
3 June - Amsterdam
 Netherlands 0
 Uruguay 4
28 May - Amsterdam
 Germany 1
 Germany 4
7 June - Amsterdam
  Switzerland 0
 Uruguay 3
29 May - Amsterdam
 Italy 4
1 and 4 June - Amsterdam
 France 3
 Italy (Rematch)1 (7)
30 May - Amsterdam
 Spain 1 (1)
 Spain 7
10 and 13 June - Amsterdam
 Mexico 1
 Uruguay (Rematch)1 (2)
28 May - Amsterdam
 Argentina 1 (1)
 Egypt 7
4 June - Amsterdam
 Turkey 1
 Egypt 2
29 May - Amsterdam
 Portugal 2
6 June - Amsterdam
 Kingdom of SCS 1
 Argentina 6
27 May - Amsterdam
 Egypt 0 Third place
 Argentina 11
2 June - Amsterdam9 June - Amsterdam
 United States 2
 Argentina 6  Italy 11
29 May - Amsterdam
 Belgium3  Egypt 3
 Belgium 5
 Luxembourg 3

Match details

Preliminary round

Portugal 4–2 Chile
Vítor Silva Goal 38'
Pepe Goal 40'50'
Valdemar Mota Goal 63'
Report Saavedra Goal 14'
Carbonell Goal 30'
Attendance: 2,309
Referee: Youssuf Mohamed (EGY)

First round

Belgium 5–3 Luxembourg
R. Braine Goal 9'72'
Versijp Goal 20'
Moeschal Goal 23'67'
Report Schutz Goal 31'
Weisgerber Goal 42'
Theissen Goal 44'
Attendance: 5,834
Referee: Lorenzo Martínez (ARG)

Germany 4–0  Switzerland
Hofmann Goal 17'75'85'
Hornauer Goal 42'
Attendance: 16,158
Referee: Willem Eymers (NED)

Egypt 7–1 Turkey
El-Hassany Goal 20' (pen.)
Riad Goal 27'
Mokhtar Goal 46'50'63'
El-Sayed Hooda Goal 53'
El-Zobeir Goal 86'
Report Refet Goal 71'
Attendance: 2,744
Referee: Marcel Slawick (FRA)

Italy 4–3 France
Rosetti Goal 19'
Levratto Goal 39'
Banchero Goal 43'
Baloncieri Goal 60'
Report Brouzes Goal 15'17'
Dauphin Goal 61'
Attendance: 2,509
Referee: Henri Christophe (BEL)

Portugal 2–1 Kingdom of SCS
Vítor Silva Goal 25'
Augusto Silva Goal 90'
Report Bonačić Goal 40'
Attendance: 1,226
Referee: Alfred Birlem (GER)

Argentina 11–2 United States
Ferreira Goal 9'29'
Tarasconi Goal 24'63'66'89'
Orsi Goal 41'73'
Cherro Goal 47'49'57'
Report Kuntner Goal 55'
Caroll Goal 75'
Attendance: 3,848
Referee: Paul Ruoff (SUI)

Spain 7–1 Mexico
Regueiro Goal 13'27'
Yermo Goal 43'63'85'
Marculeta Goal 66'
Mariscal Goal 70'
Report Carreño Goal 76'
Attendance: 2,344
Referee: Gabor Boronkay (HUN)

Netherlands 0–2 Uruguay
Report Scarone Goal 20'
Urdinarán Goal 86'
Attendance: 27,730
Referee: Jan Langenus (BEL)


Italy 1–1 Spain
Baloncieri Goal 63' Report Zaldua Goal 11'
Attendance: 3,388
Referee: Domingo Lombardi (URU)
Italy 7–1 Spain
Magnozzi Goal 14'
Schiavo Goal 15'
Baloncieri Goal 18'
Bernardini Goal 40'
Rivolta Goal 72'
Levratto Goal 76'77'
Report Yermo Goal 47'
Attendance: 4,770
Referee: Hans Boekman (NED)

Argentina 6–3 Belgium
Tarasconi Goal 1'10'75'89'
Ferreira Goal 4'
Orsi Goal 81'
Report R. Braine Goal 24'
Vanhalme Goal 28'
Moeschal Goal 53'
Attendance: 16,399
Referee: Gamma Malcher (ITA)

Uruguay 4–1 Germany
Petrone Goal 35'39'84'
Castro Goal 63'
Report Hofmann Goal 81'
Attendance: 25,131
Referee: Youssuf Mohamed (EGY)

Egypt 2–1 Portugal
Mokhtar Goal 15'
Riad Goal 48'
Report Vítor Silva Goal 76'
Attendance: 3,448
Referee: Giovanni Mauro (ITA)


This meant that in the semi-final Italy played Uruguay. The Italians selected Giampiero Combi in goal, Angelo Schiavio, in attack. Both would be crowned World champions at the 1934 FIFA World Cup. In this game the Uruguayans stormed to a convincing lead by the break; Levratto's goal in the second half flattered the Italians because Uruguay ran out comfortable winners by the odd goal in 5; José Pedro Cea, Héctor Scarone scoring for the Celestes.

Argentina 6–0 Egypt
Cherro Goal 10'
Ferreira Goal 32'82'
Tarasconi Goal 37'54'61'
Attendance: 7,887
Referee: Pedro Escartín (ESP)

Uruguay 3–2 Italy
Cea Goal 17'
Campolo Goal 28'
Scarone Goal 31'
Report Baloncieri Goal 9'
Levratto Goal 60'
Attendance: 15,230
Referee: Willem Eymers (NED)

Bronze medal match

Italy 11–3 Egypt
Schiavo Goal 6'42'58'
Baloncieri Goal 14'52'
Banchero Goal 19'39'44'
Magnozzi Goal 72'80'88'
Report Riad Goal 12'16'
El-Ezam Goal 60'
Attendance: 6,378
Referee: Jan Langenus (BEL)

Gold medal match

Uruguay-Argentina captains, referee Johannes Mutters and linesmen before the final match

In the final the Uruguayans played Argentina who had trounced Egypt who would now fold like a house of cards; clearly out of their depth against more sophisticated opposition, conceding 6 goals to Argentina and as many as eleven to Italy in the Bronze medal match.

The final itself was a close - run affair. Both nations had been undefeated in competitive matches against other nations but had traded losses to each other since the last Olympic competition. The interest, understandably, was immense. The Dutch had received 250,000 requests for tickets from all over Europe.

Once again, there was little in it; the first game finished 1-1. The tie went to a replay. Uruguay's Scarone converted the winner in the second half of that game. It seemed only fair and fitting that on May 18, 1929, the Barcelona congress voted that Uruguay be the first nation to host a World Cup.

First leg

Uruguay 1–1 (a.e.t.) Argentina
Petrone Goal 23' Report Ferreira Goal 50'
Attendance: 28,253
Referee: Johannes Mutters (NED)


Uruguay 2–1 Argentina
Figueroa Goal 17'
Scarone Goal 73'
Report Monti Goal 28'

Consolation first round

The consolation tournament was ratified by FIFA but, as it was not organized by the Amsterdam Olympic organization, Olympic historians do not consider these matches to be part of the 1928 Summer Olympics.[6]

Netherlands 3–1 Belgium
Ghering Goal 4'
Smeets Goal 6'
Tap Goal 63'
Report P. Braine Goal 85'
Attendance: 20,000
Referee: Gamma Malcher (ITA)

Chile 3–1 Mexico
Subiabre Goal 24'48'89' Report Sota Goal 15'
Attendance: 5,000
Referee: Johannes Mutters (NED)

Consolation final

Netherlands 2–2 Chile
Ghering Goal 59'
Smeets Goal 66'
Report Bravo Goal 55'
Alfaro Goal 89'
Attendance: 18,000
Referee: Guillermo Comorera (ESP)
  • Note: The Netherlands wins after drawing of lots but the Cup was awarded to Chile


Uruguay, winner of the tournament
The Argentina team won the Silver Medal
Gold Silver Bronze
José Andrade
Juan Peregrino Anselmo
Pedro Arispe
Juan Arremón
Venancio Bartibás
Fausto Batignani
René Borjas
Antonio Campolo
Adhemar Canavesi
Héctor Castro
Pedro Cea
Lorenzo Fernández
Roberto Figueroa
Álvaro Gestido
Andrés Mazali
Ángel Melogno
José Nasazzi
Pedro Petrone
Juan Piriz
Héctor Scarone
Domingo Tejera
Santos Urdinarán
Ludovico Bidoglio
Ángel Bossio
Saúl Calandra
Alfredo Carricaberry
Roberto Cherro
Octavio Díaz
Juan Evaristo
Manuel Ferreira
Enrique Gainzarain
Alfredo Helman
Segundo Luna
Ángel Segundo Medici
Luis Monti
Pedro Ochoa
Rodolfo Orlandini
Raimundo Orsi
Fernando Paternoster
Feliciano Perducca
Natalio Perinetti
Domingo Tarasconi
Luis Weihmuller
Adolfo Zumelzú
Elvio Banchero
Virgilio Felice Levratto
Pietro Pastore
Gino Rossetti
Attilio Ferraris
Enrico Rivolta
Felice Gasperi
Alfredo Pitto
Pietro Genovesi
Antonio Janni
Fulvio Bernardini
Silvio Pietroboni
Andrea Viviano
Delfo Bellini
Umberto Caligaris
Virginio Rosetta
Giampiero Combi
Giovanni De Prà
Adolfo Baloncieri
Mario Magnozzi
Angelo Schiavio
Valentino Degani


of Argentina

11 goals
6 goals
4 goals
3 goals
2 goals
1 goal


  1. ^ "Football at the 1928 Amsterdam Summer Games". Sports Reference. Retrieved 5 October 2018.
  2. ^ Beck, Peter J. (19 August 1999). "BRITISH FOOTBALL AND FIFA, 1928-46: GOING TO WAR OR PEACEFUL COEXISTENCE?". FIFA. Archived from the original on 4 September 2005.
  3. ^ Glanville, Brian (2005). The Story of the World Cup. London: Faber and Faber. p. 15.
  4. ^ "Uruguay 1930". Archived from the original on 15 July 2007.
  5. ^ Miladinovich, Misha. "Yugoslavia National Team List of Results 1920-1929". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 18 December 2013.
  6. ^ "Football at the 1928 Amsterdam Summer Games: Men's Football". Sports Reference LLC. Archived from the original on 11 November 2013. Retrieved 18 December 2013.

External links