41. Luis Monti

41. Luis Monti

Born May 15th 1901 in Buenos Aires, Luis Monti is the only person to have played two World Cup finals for different countries, representing Argentina in 1930 and Italy in 1934. “Doble Ancho” (double wide), as Monti was nicknamed after his ability to cover a wide zone of the field, started his career in Huracán where he helped them win a league championship in 1921. The following year, he was transferred to Boca Juniors and months later he joined the club San Lorenzo where he became a star as he helped them lift three league championships in 1923, 1924 and 1927.
 
Monti made his international debut for the Argentinian national side in the South American Championship of 1927, that wonderful team with Evaristo, Orsi and Monti led Argentina to win the tournament. At the time of the inaugural World Cup, in 1930, Luis Monti was already considered one of the best center half of South America, he played critical role in the tournament, scoring in the minute 81st the goal that gave Argentina a 1-0 victory against France.
 
In the semifinal Argentina demolished the United States, Monti scored the first of six goals that gave the South Americans a 6-1 victory. But in the end, the hosts Uruguay won the final match, becoming the first World Champions after beating Argentina 4-2. In 1931 Monti moved to Italy, brought to Juventus by Renato Cesarini. He helped the club lift four league championships (1932, 1933, 1934, 1935) and one Italian Cup in 1938.
 
Vittorio Pozzo, the coach of Italy, thought that Luisito was the perfect link between the talented forward Meazza and the defender Monziglio, therefore Monti received an invitation to participate in the 1934 World Cup. At that time, the rules permitted a player to represent more than one country in the World Cup and the “Oriundi”, which is the Italian term for a foreign player of Italian descent, were very popular in their clubs, the idea of having “oriundi” players in the National Team was well accepted by the fans. Raimundo Orsi, Enrique Guaita and Luis Monti, all born in Argentina proved to be decisive elements in the 1934 World Cup.
 
In the semifinal against Austria, Luis Monti was given a man-marking job on Matthias Sindelar, one of the most talented players of the decade, a task that Monti completed with a lot of success. In the final, Italy won 2-1 against Czechoslovakia and Luis Monti added a winner’s medal to the runners-up award with Argentina four years earlier, becoming the first man to win successive World Cup medals with different nations. Luis Monti ended his career playing for Juventus in 1939 after 225 games in the Italian Serie A and became a coach after his retirement. He passed away in 1983, aged 82.
41. Luis Monti
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