The I.S.A. Collection

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Noel Lemon Collection - Part 2

The array of soccer history that has been added to the I.S.A. Collection is rich indeed. The silver salver presented to the US National Team by the Colombian club "Millionarios" was made for the very first Marboro Cup in 1987.

The silverware (above) was finely crafted and engraved. The edging depicts the 11 districts that make up the Republic of Colombia.

Also included in the collection are several National and club penants that were exchanged before some of the international and friendly matches. The large satin banners like Peru (below), Colombia and Juventus are very ornate and colorful.

Lemon's organization - Mundial International Ltd., was a catalyst in expanding international tours and was the first to bring the Colombian National Team to play England at Wembley Stadium.

Mundial also facilitated the first tour for Peru on European soil. As a token to commemorate the match between Holland and Peru in October 1998, this ornate silver and gem stone statue (below) was created.

More in Part 3.

Friday, May 28, 2010

I.S.A. Acquires the "Noel Lemon collection"

Noel Lemon is one of the pioneers of the modern professional era of American soccer. He brought an NASL Championship to Oklahoma with the Tulsa Roughnecks and the ASL and National Championship to Florida's Ft. Lauderdale Strikers. The effects of the Strikers on the South Florida community is still endeared to this day. The Chamber of Commerce recognition award (below) was presented to the club after winning the National title.

Lemon was also instrumental in bringing top level international soccer to the United States when almost none existed. He organized the Marlboro Cup - a star studded international event that allowed the US National Team to prepare for their first World Cup in 40 years and give Americans the taste for quality international soccer.

During his tenure as GM of the Roughnecks, the club toured Britain and played against some of the historied clubs such as Cardiff City (Wales), Leicester City, Portsmouth and Derby County (England), as well as clubs from Holland and Bermuda.
The gift that was exchanged between Tulsa and Derby Couty F.C. (below) was this magnifcent statue of a ram - the nickname of Derby County club.
The Marlboro Cup (played from 1987 to 1990) hosted in several American cities, included visits from Millionarios, America de Cali and Atletico Nacional (Colombia), Colo-colo (Chile), Sporting Cristal and Alianza Lima (Peru), Benfica and Sporting (Portugal), Club America and Atlas (Mexico), Juventus (Italy) and Flamengo (Brazil).

The US World Cup Team was also able to play other National sides from South Korea, Uruguay, Colombia, Costa Rica, Russia and Poland.

The silver presentation coupet (above) was made by the famous Tiffany & Company. It is one of the many fine gifts exchanged during the tournament which was held at various times in Miami, New York, Los Angeles and Chicago.

"This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to exhibit these artifacts" says I.S.A. Historical Director Chuck Zsolnai. "We are pleased that Noel's work and the legacy from this era of American Soccer will be preserved for future generations."

There are plans for a touring exhibit and the artifacts will be available for other museums to loan and organizations to research.