CHICAGO (April 1, 2012) – Former Italian National Team and New York Cosmos forward Giorgio Chinaglia passed away Sunday in Florida at the age of 65 due to complications from a heart attack, according to several Italian news outlets.
The 2000 National Soccer Hall of Fame inductee scored more goals than any player in NASL history. During a seven-year career with the Cosmos, Chinaglia tallied 193 goals in 213 regular-season games, and 50 goals in 43 playoff games.
One of the league’s most recognizable players, he led the NASL in scoring five times (1976, 1978, 1980-82) and was named MVP in 1981. He helped lead the Cosmos to four championships in 1977, 1978, 1980 and 1982.
Chinaglia started his career with Swansea in the Welsh league in 1964-65 before spending several seasons in his native Italy where he won a Serie A title with Lazio in 1974. Two years later, he signed with the Cosmos in 1976, playing alongside Pele and Franz Beckenbauer.
Chinaglia also earned 14 caps with the Italian National Team and participated in the 1974 FIFA World Cup.