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Posted at 3:25 PM ET, 06/12/2010

World Cup fever hits Dupont Circle

By Washington Post Editors

Dupont Circle looked like a rock concert Saturday as hundreds of soccer fans filled every available patch of grass, waving flags of many countries. Shouts of "USA" rang out through the trees.

The crowd was largely young and reflected the Washington area’s international mix. Elina Teplinsky, 29, of Russia and Salvador Rivas, 28, of El Salvador arrived at 6:30 a.m. to camp out in front of one of the big screens to watch Greece lose to Korea and Argentina beat Nigeria.

“We get to enjoy this every four years so we’ve got to take advantage,” said Rivas, who was wearing a Liverpool T-shirt and rooting for England. Teplinsky, wearing a Greece tank top and waving an American flag, was not put off. “That’s the great part about the World Cup. Everyone can root for a different team – and all the conflicts in the world are forgotten.”

Joseph Lichterman, 19, a Capitol Hill intern from Detroit, grew up playing soccer and said he was glad to see so much enthusiasm for the sport. “I feel like I’m in a different country because everyone’s so excited for a soccer game.”

Many fans wrapped themselves in a favorite team's national colors, but Dean Howarth, 45, and Jeff Jones, 33, physics teachers from Arlington, dressed in blue Colonial garb with tri-corner hats.

“The last big battle that was fought in this area we sent England home,” Howarth said.

Had he faced any challenges from the other side?

“They’re kind of like laying low but that’s typical for Red Coats.”

But a few feet away, Emile Hoffman, 40, a Philadelphia native who used to live in Oxford, England, disagreed. “I support England because it’s really in their hearts. In England,” he said, “they’re glued to the screen. It’s maybe like this but five times bigger.”

--Tara Bahrampour

By Washington Post Editors  | June 12, 2010; 3:25 PM ET
 
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Comments

I couldn't make it but it sounds like it went off well. Many thanks to the organizers!

Posted by: Curious99 | June 12, 2010 6:48 PM | Report abuse

I was there and the crowd definitely numbered in the thousands not hundreds.

Posted by: croftonpost | June 12, 2010 10:36 PM | Report abuse

soccer = zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz..................

Posted by: arioch666 | June 13, 2010 9:52 AM | Report abuse

Bring on Rondo, Kobe, and Strasburg. Real athletes with real skills.

90 minutes of running up and down a field with a 0-0 tie - keep than nonsense in England.

Posted by: tgt111 | June 13, 2010 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Damn, wish I was there for that! By the way, here's an idea for a sport: so, we stand around on a field for 3 and 1/2 hours and people just sit in the stands drinking and eating hotdogs and get fat: baseball, it's fantastic. So much better than a team of athletes on the pitch for 90min.....right, tgt111.

Posted by: coltrane1 | June 13, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

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