CHICAGO (Tuesday, May 21, 2002) - U.S. World Cup team forward Clint Mathis is the cover subject of this week's issue of Sports Illustrated. The unique edition features a three-page profile of Mathis, as well as an in-depth preview of all 32 teams competing at the 2002 World Cup in Korea/Japan. The new issue, dated May 27, 2002, hits newsstands tomorrow.
Mathis becomes the first male soccer player since 1994 (Ernie Stewart) and the first MLS player ever to grace the cover of America's largest sports weekly. Brandi Chastain and the U.S. Women's National Team were both cover subjects of SI in 1999 when the U.S. captured the 1999 Women's World Cup.
This is also the 10th time in Sports Illustrated's history, dating back to 1954, that soccer has been the magazine's cover subject. The players previously featured on the cover, prior to Mathis, were Bob Rigby (1973), Pele (1975), Daniel Passarella (1978), Giorgio Chinaglia (1979), Diego Maradona (1986), Ernie Stewart (1994), Brandi Chastain (1999) and the U.S. Women's National Team (1999 Sportswomen of the Year).