The man known as Freddie G. to many soccer fans will also be known as a member of the Indoor Soccer Hall of Fame.
Grgurev, one of the most lethal strikers during the early days of professional indoor soccer, was elected among six other ex-players, it was announced on Thursday.
All inductees of the Hall’s fifth class were offensive-minded as it was delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Other inductees includes Chico Borja, Andy Chapman, Jan Goossens, Michael King and David Doyle. The six players combined for 3,131 goals in careers that spanned from 1978-2008.
Grgurev, who turns 71 on Sept. 14, was the Major Indoor Soccer League’s first scoring champion, leading the league with 74 points in its inaugural 1978-79 season with the Fever. He beat out the Arrows’ Steve Zungul for the scoring crown.
A three-time all-star, Grgurev won a championship with the Arrows in 1980-81 and finished ninth all-time in MISL history with 544 points.
Broken down, that came out to 337 goals and 219 assists over 379 games.
He also played for the New Jersey Rockets, Memphis Americans, Las Vegas Americans, Pittsburgh Spirit and New York Express in his impressive nine-year indoor career.
Grgurev competed with the Lancers during the 1979 and 1980 North American Soccer League seasons, scoring six goals n 3i9 appearances.
He suited up 14 times for the U.S. men’s national team, scoring one goal.
Borja, who passed away on Jan. 25, 2021 at the age of 61, was best know for his exuberant style and two stints with the Wichita Wings that accounted for eight of his 12 indoor seasons. The naturalized American citizen from Ecuador scored 368 goals, but his playmaking ability resulted in 464 assists, including an MISL-leading 53 assists in 1988-89. His overtime goal in the 1991 Major Soccer League All-Star Game earned him the game’s MVP Award. He retired after the 1993-94 season and coached the Continental Indoor Soccer Association’s Houston Hotshots for one campaign. Borja was eighth on the MISL’s all-time points board with 612.
Few players straddled the MISL and National Premier Soccer League eras like Andy Chapman. Like Borja, Chapman spent eight seasons with the Wings, but the London native’s 19 season career dominated the 1980s and 1990s. After starring in the MISL for 12 seasons, Chapman signed with the NPSL (formerly the American Indoor Soccer Association) and reignited his career, earning 1990-91 NPSL MVP honors before leading the Detroit Rockers to a championship the following season. Chapman was considered a sex symbol in his MISL playing days, but he let his game do the talking with 667 goals in 670 career regular season games. Chapman recently narrated the Wichita Wings documentary God Save the Wings, which also featured Borja.
Goossens won an NASL indoor championship with the Edmonton Drillers before breaking into the MISL with the Golden Bay Earthquakes. After two deep playoff runs with the Minnesota Strikers, he moved on to Kansas City, where he did his best work. There, he racked up four 90-point seasons in five years. Goossens played his final season with the Dallas Sidekicks after setting Comets franchise records in goals, assists and points. The five time all-league forward tallied 801 points in 439 games. Goossens finished sixth all-time in MISL points with 682, one fewer than fifth-place Kai Haaskivi.
King tallied an extraordinary 709 goals in 22 seasons, the final 35 of which were spent with the Milwaukee Wave, where he won four championships. The nine-time all-star had nine career 40 goals seasons, including two with the MISL’s Cleveland Crunch. In the 1996-97 season, King recorded a career-high 72 goals and 116 points.
Doyle got his start with the Kansas City Comets and won the MISL’s rookie of the year accolades in 1987-88. He registered the first of five consecutive 50-goal seasons in 1991-92 with the Dallas Sidekicks and was one of the few players who were able to play year round in the summer CISL and winter NPSL. Doyle won three championships with the Sidekicks and appeared in five other finals with the Sidekicks and St. Louis Ambush. He scored 637 goals in 526 career games, was selected to the all-star team seven times, was all-league first team six times, and was the 1999 WISL MVP.