Random Ex-Footballer of the Week Special: Jorge Campos

Given that Ireland face Mexico, let's look back at one of their most memorable players

Jorge Campos, Mexico, USA 94

Jorge Campos © INPHO/Billy Stickland

Across the world in any given period, there are thousands upon thousands of footballers plying their trades.

Only a select few achieve global cultural significance while many who briefly made an impact, are not heard about very often.

Each week, I'll be looking at a player that briefly made an impact but who remains forgotten about for the most part. You can throw suggestions in this direction on Twitter by tweeting @newstalksport or @raftastico.

This week we've already had a look at former Aston Villa and Ecuador right back Ulises de la Cruz, but given that Ireland face Mexico, let's remember Jorge Campos.

Claim To Fame

Between 1991 and 2004, the goalkeeper won a huge number of senior international caps - 130 in all in fact. His career never took him outside Mexico at club level except for spells in Major League Soccer with Chicago Fire and Los Angeles Galaxy.

Which means that for the likes of ourselves here in Ireland, we only got to see him at World Cups and that's his claim to fame as you wouldn't fail to miss him for a couple of reasons.

The 50 year old was the starting keeper as Mexico faced Ireland at USA 94 and while we all remember Packie Bonner's catchy goalkeeper kit at the tournament, Campos' became famous for his extremely colourful jerseys in that tournament, which he had a role in designing.

 

Jorge Campos of Mexico gathers the ball ahead of Tommy Coyne of the Republic of Ireland ©INPHO/Billy Stickland

But his size was also something that was very noticeable. The expectation of modern goalkeepers is that they have to be at least 6 foot tall and even that lower benchmark would be regarded as short.

Campos was just 5 foot 6, yet he was able to compensate for what would be considered a disadvantage with supreme athleticism and reflexes. And he wasn't alone in that regard when it came to Mexican goalkeepers.

You might remember the 2002 World Cup which Campos traveled to as a squad member. The No 1 in that tournament was Oscar Perez who was in fact just an inch taller. 

Campos also proved a maverick as he sometimes played up front, having started his career as a striker.