"In Uruguay they'd have killed me if we won, and in Italy they'd have killed me if I lost."
Luis Felipe Monti is the only player to have appeared in two World Cup Finals representing different nations. Monti played as an attacking centre half. As part of the old Metodo system he would mark the opposing centre half when his team was defending, but would be the main play maker when his team were attacking due to his creativity and passing technique. He was nicknamed "doblo ancho", English translation 'double wide, not for his stature but because of his extensive coverage of the pitch.
At the 1930 World Cup Final, Monti's Argentina were up by two goals to nil at half time. Yet their dynamic midfielder was in tears. As he left the pitch for the break Monti was approached by two rather dodgy characters; they threatened "If you win, we will kill your Mother and Sister."
It was clear to all spectating the game that Monti was a shadow of himself in the second half. The official report notes an injury to his thigh but everyone knows that the death threats took their toll. So much so that Uruguay won the game 4-2, becoming the first nation to win the World Cup and on home soil too.
Four years passed and Monti, now a Juventus player, had been granted full Italian citizenship. As such, this gifted midfielder would be part of the World Cup winning Italian XI that would triumph 2-1 against Uruguay. Perhaps Monti gained some sweet revenge after the victory.
World Cup success brought Monti untold fame. He remains to this day to be the only footballer to appear in the World Cup Final for different nations. Oddly, he lifted the Copa America with Argentina in 1927, and 7 years later he lifted the Jules Rimet trophy with the Azzurri.
Madness! Good old Monti getting justice over Uruguayan crime lords.
RIP Kick off at 3
This series offers tales from a time before the end of the 3pm kick off. When crowds were enormous, money wasn't a thing and loyalty was at the heart of the sport.