Clerkenwell, London born full back Giuseppe “Joe” Bacuzzi began his football career with Tufnell Park in 1934 from where he signed for Fulham in April 1936, making his Football League debut at Chesterfield in January 1937. Described as “beautifully built with a grand kick in either foot, he is exceptionally strong in the leg and rarely loses a tackle”, he established himself in Fulham’s first team in January 1938 and was an ever present in 1938-39, the final season before the outbreak of the Second World War in September 1939 forced the abandonment of peacetime football. Between 1943 and 1944 he also served with the military in North Africa and Italy. In November 1945, he guested for both Chelsea and Arsenal in their prestige friendlies against a touring FC Dynamo Moscow, also playing for Bury and Notts County in wartime football. He also played for England 13 times in War internationals during the Second World War between 1939 and 1946.
After the War he returned to Craven Cottage and played for Fulham until his final appearance in December 1955, scoring twice in 302 appearances (once each side of the War, he scored his first in a 4-1 win over Luton Town in April 1937, his second goal for the club with a fortunate shot against Wolves in August 1949), winning the Second Division Championship wit The Cottagers in 1948-49, a campaign in which he missed only one game. He only retired when a terrible knee injury ended his playing career at the end of the 1955-56 season, already aged 40. After retiring as a player in 1956 he was appointed reserve team trainer at Fulham and stayed in that post until 1965 when he was sacked by Vic Buckingham.
His son, Dave Bacuzzi, was also a notable footballer, playing as a defender for Arsenal, Manchester City and Reading in the 1960’s.