Sport: Here Come the Yanks!

Shut out for 40 years, a U.S. soccer team goes to the World Cup

For most of the globe, soccer's World Cup competition is the very soul of sport, a month-long extravaganza of adrenaline, athletics and nationalism. But American sports fans hardly notice the quadrennial event. Not only are the Yanks mesmerized by the summertime rapture of baseball, golf and tennis, but most of them find soccer -- which the rest of the world perversely calls football -- a frustrating, often impenetrable game. What kind of sport is it, after all, where players can't use their hands, pass the ball with their feet, butt it with their heads, only rarely score goals and touch off...

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