Tony DiCicco, coach of 1999 World Cup-winning USWNT, dies at 68

Former U.S. women's national team coach Tony DiCicco passed away at 68.
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Tony DiCicco, a U.S. National Soccer Hall of Fame inductee who coached the women's national team to a 1996 Olympic gold medal and the 1999 World Cup title, died Monday evening. He was 68 years old. 

The cause of death is unknown, but in a family statement posted by his son, Anthony, on Tuesday, it revealed that he had endured an illness. He passed away at his home in the company of his family.

In addition to his success on the senior women's level (a 105-8-8 record), DiCicco coached the U.S. Under-20 national team to World Cup glory in 2008 and went on to coach the Boston Breakers in WPS from 2009-2011.

"Today we mourn the loss of one of the most influential coaches in U.S. Soccer history," U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati said in a statement. "Tony's passion for the game as a coach, administrator and broadcaster was always evident and his relationships with everyone in the soccer community distinguished him as a compassionate and much-loved man. U.S. Soccer will forever be thankful to Tony for his vast contributions to the game and we extend thoughts and condolences to his family and to the many people who were positively impacted by him during what was a remarkable life."

DiCicco was inducted into the National Soccer Hall of Fame in 2012 as a "builder," recognized for his contributions in growing the sport in the country.

"I am delighted that I was recognized not only as a coach, but as somebody who has helped build the sport here in the United States," DiCicco told U.S. Soccer at the time. "It means a lot to me because, if you look at the list, when I joined, there were incredible builders in that list and to have only one person each year be inducted is an incredible honor for me and my family and my teams."

Sympathies and tributes poured in from all corners of the U.S. soccer community in light of his passing.

DiCicco was most recently an analyst for FOX Sports, and he was part of the broadcast team that covered the first U.S. Women's World Cup triumph since his time on the sidelines in '99.