Marcelo Balboa is a former professional football (soccer) player from the United States of America. He grew up in Cerritos in California. In the 1990s, he served as the captain of the United States Men’s National Soccer Team (USMNT). He has also been inducted into the National Soccer Hall of Fame.
Following his retirement from professional soccer, Balboa served as a commentator for sports networks such as ABC and ESPN. He also worked for Univision, commentating for international football events like the FIFA World Cup.
Player Profile and Personal Life
Balboa was born on August 8, 1967, in Chicago, Illinois. He is of Argentinian descent and he and his family would later move to Cerritos, California. His father was Luis Balboa who was also a professional football player and played for the Chicago Mustangs. Early on, his father served as his coach.
Marcelo stands 185 centimeters tall and his last listed weight was 79 kilograms. He played defender and in the 90s, he became the team captain for the USMNT.
High School and College
Coached by his father on the football team, Balboa graduated from Cerritos High School. He went on to attend local Cerritos College where he also played on the football team. He was instrumental in helping the team reach a number of victories. Cerritos College has since retired Balboa’s jersey number.
In the collegiate off-season, Balboa played for a number of teams including the Western Soccer League’s San Diego Nomads. He played for them from 1987 to 1989.
In 1988, he transferred to play for the San Diego State University. While attending, he was named to the First Team All American as well as to the Second Team.
Balboa made his professional debut in 1990 when he was signed on by the San Francisco Bay Blackhawks. He appeared 15 times for the team, scoring 7 times. He would later transfer to the Colorado Foxes in 1992. After that, he moved to play for Leon, the Mexican football team based in Leon, Guanajuato.
Following his stint with Leon, Balboa returned to the United States, playing for the Colorado Rapids. He was with the Rapids from 1996 to 2001 and made 151 appearances, scoring 24 goals.
Before eventually announcing his retirement from professional soccer, Balboa signed with MetroStars in 2002. He only made one appearance with the team.
National Team Performances
Balboa appeared on the US National Team 127 times as scored 13 goals from 1988 to 2000. The team’s performance with Balboa is listed below:
1992 – FIFA Confederations Cup, Saudi Arabia – Bronze 1999 – FIFA Confederations Cup, Mexico – Bronze 1991 – CONCACAF Gold Cup, United States – Gold 1996 - CONCACAF Gold Cup, United States – Bronze 1998 - CONCACAF Gold Cup, United States – Silver