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Praise for soccer in Middle America

Members of the British press like to snub their noses at American soccer, but Chris Wheeler of the Daily Mail, who followed Manchester United on its tour of the United States, was impressed how Middle America has taken to the game.

In particular, he was impressed with the turnout at Kansas City's Arrowhead Stadium, where more than 52,000 fans watched the Wizards upset United. "Kansas City," noted Wheeler, "may be slower paced and more remote than most U.S. cities (you should see the T-shirts dedicated to cow-tipping in the airport shop) but there is no doubting its passion for the sport."

He said England is fortunate that FIFA plans on awarding the 2018 World Cup to a European nation because Kansas City is just one of 18 cities in the formidable bid the USA has submitted.

Wheeler could not help but also note how refreshing it was MLS Commissioner Don Garber was accessible to the media. "It's hard to imagine," he said Wheeler, "the chief executive of the FA pitching up in the press box at Wembley unless he'd taken a wrong turn somewhere along the way."

Read the whole story at Daily Mail »

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