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Morning Kickaround

*Some Fairfax County soccer players and their parents are partnering with U.S. diplomats to build in Iraq a network of soccer fields and organize a youth league modeled after those in the United States.

*Real Maryland (USL2) needs overtime to oust a famed New York amateur side, 3-2, in the first round of the U.S. Open Cup. The Monarchs will next face Carolina (USL1).

*Today's Euro matches:
Sweden-Spain, noon (ESPN2)
Greece-Russia, 2:45 (ESPN2)

A battle for first place, and a defending champion in peril. What do you think will happen?

By Steve Goff  |  June 14, 2008; 10:16 AM ET
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Next: Matchnight: DCU vs. New York


Go Spain.

Posted by: bubbles | June 14, 2008 10:34 AM | Report abuse

Rock Real Maryland! Making an impression in their first season.
That's nice for helping out but children playing with bare foot is everywhere in poor countries, not just Iraq. And they call it football and not soccer so we should respect to that and use football.
Spain will sweep Sweden. Greece is done.

Posted by: football | June 14, 2008 10:35 AM | Report abuse

Russia comes good today, knocking the Greeks out of the tournament.

Posted by: Eric in Baltimore | June 14, 2008 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Liveblogging of Spain-Sweden taking place at Booked For Dissent beginning at 11:45.

Posted by: Dave Lifton | June 14, 2008 11:26 AM | Report abuse

viva la furia rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrroja

Posted by: !! | June 14, 2008 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Spain 2 - 1; Torres with game winner. Russia 2 - 0; thankfully knocking bunkering Greeks and their cowardly, unsportsmanlike tactics from the tournament.

Posted by: Hmmm | June 14, 2008 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Man, every time I read an article like that Open Cup wrap up, it makes me appreciate Goff's journalistic integrity and unbiased reporting that much more. Does Dylan Butler do PR for the Pancyprian Freedoms in his spare time?

Posted by: Kenobi | June 14, 2008 11:50 AM | Report abuse

I would hope that the Iraqis would aspire to something better than to emulate our youth league system. Sure it's organized, but that's probably te best thing that can be said.

Posted by: owendylan | June 14, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

That ref again. I am pretty much outraged by all these refs at the Euro games this year. They are supposed to be the best but all I see are a lot of inexcuable dead wrong decisions.

Posted by: td | June 14, 2008 12:54 PM | Report abuse

I'm just thankful Ray Hudson isn't commenting on any of the Euro 2008 matches.

Posted by: Joe | June 14, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Ray is awesome. The best quote from the Eros so far...

"Well it's a Dutch Oven and the French are toast!"

Posted by: peridigm | June 14, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Spain reminded me of DCU a little there. Lots of passing and possesion and no finishing while being open to being burned by defensive mistakes.

Posted by: laur | June 14, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

the refs have been atrocious this tournament - we complain about how jv the refs are in mls but I'm not convinced that they are not that much better (if at all) than in europe. You would expect that the highest level of soccer in europe would also command the most competent refs

Posted by: ef | June 14, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else put off by our attempt to screw up Iraqi football? They are the Asian Champions and sitting pretty in their preliminary qualifying WC group despite all of the violence and instability in their country, I'm not sure what wisdom we can impart to make them much better...

Posted by: Chase | June 15, 2008 7:53 PM | Report abuse

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