Tino Lettieri

Tino Lettieri

Martino "Tino" Lettieri (born 27 September 1957 in Bari, Italy) is a former NASL and MISL professional soccer goalkeeper, who represented Canada twice at the Summer Olympics: 1976 and 1984.

Raised in Canada, Lettieri began his pro career with the Minnesota Kicks in 1977 and played there until 1981. He went on to play the Vancouver Whitecaps in '82 and '83 and the Minnesota Strikers in '84. He was named NASL North American Player of the Year in 1983 and had the league's best Goals Against Average in both '82 and '83.

Lettieri earned 24 caps for Canada and was their first-choice goalie from 1980 until the 1986 FIFA World Cup, where he played two of Canada's three matches.

Lettieri was a regular in the original MISL. He continued to play for the Strikers as the team joined the indoor league, playing the 1984-85 season through to 1987-88. Lettieri was voted Goalkeeper of the Year for the 1986-87 season.

Lettieri finished his outdoor career in 1987 with the Hamilton Steelers in Canadian Soccer League. He was elected to the Canadian Soccer Hall of Fame in 2001.

Lettieri is often remembered for his keeping a stuffed parrot in the back of his net during games. The bird was named 'Ozzie'. In 1985 the League banned Ozzie II from the nets. Tino married Michelle Nanne, daughter of famed North Star player and General Manager, Lou Nanne. Lettieri now runs a successful food products business out of Burnsville, Minnesota.

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