Geoff Coombes

A forward who played for teams in Detroit and Chicago from the 1930s through the 1950s, and was a member of the United States squad at the 1950 World Cup in Brazil.

Coombes, who was born in England, moved to Detroit as a teenager in 1935. After serving in the U.S. Army during World War II, he joined the Chicago Vikings team that won the U.S. Open Cup in 1946, defeating Ponta Delgada of Fall River, Mass., in the final. Later in 1946, he played the first of his two seasons in the North American Soccer Football League, which was an attempt to become a midwestern version of the American Soccer League. In that first NASFL season, his Detroit Wolverines team won the league championship, led by Gil Heron, a Jamaican who was the first black player with a U.S. pro team. After a change of ownership, they were the Detroit Pioneers in the second, and last, NASFL season.

Coombes continued to play in amateur and semipro teams after the end of the NASFL, resulting in his being selected to the U.S. World Cup team in 1950.

Inducted in 1976.

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