DC lawmakers and pro footballers team up to support soccer in tenth Congressional game

Category: Sports


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. underserved / ˌʌn dər ˈsɜrvd / (adj.) – not provided with adequate care or good quality service, especially from the government or other institutions

    A charity is offering free educational resources for children living in underserved neighborhoods.

  2. fundraiser / ˈfʌndˌreɪ zɚ / (n.) – an event planned to collect money for a charity, organization, etc.

    The local community organized a fundraiser to raise money for the new children’s hospital.

  3. lobbyist / ˈlɒb i ɪst / (n.) – someone who attempts to persuade government officials or organizations to do something

    The lobbyist met with several senators to discuss the impact of the new tax bill on small businesses.

  4. rematch / ˈriˌmætʃ / (n.) – a game that is played by the same people or teams after an earlier game

    The football teams are scheduled to have a rematch next week after their previous game ended in a tie.

  5. miraculous / mɪˈræk yə ləs / (adj.) – very good, completely unexpected, and often very lucky

    The weakest team had a miraculous win against the strongest team.


Read the text below.

Democrats and Republicans from Congress teamed up with professional footballers to raise money for youth soccer programs during the tenth edition of the Congressional Soccer Match.

The game of red versus blue was the headline act for the U.S. Soccer Federation event at Audi Field in the nation’s capitol on May 8.

Rep. Darin LaHood, a Republican lawmaker from Illinois who also co-chairs the Congressional Soccer Caucus, said the organization helps build soccer pitches in underserved communities throughout the country to make the sport more accessible to young players.

“Soccer is the number one growing sport in the United States right now,” said LaHood. “We’ve got COPA coming this summer. We’ve got the World Cup coming in 2026.”

Adolph Joseph DeLaGarza, who played 14 years in Major League Soccer, participated on the Republican squad and shared a more realistic outlook on the growth of the sport he loves.

“We’re not there yet on that global level. Our stadiums are not the size of NFL stadiums. But at the same time, when I joined the league in 2009 to now, it’s a huge difference,” DeLaGarza told the AP.

“The way the fans get to experience things from the way the players are paid and ultimately the product on the field is the biggest difference,” he added.

The fundraiser started with a tournament between staff from twelve embassies, the European Union, and the U.S. State Department. The Embassy of Chile took home the trophy.

A team of lobbyists also defended their title in a rematch against Congressional staff.

The Democratic and Republican teams were all tied up during half with one goal a piece, but then the GOP retook the lead in the second half and kept extending it to win the match 4 to 3.

Dwayne De Rosario, a former professional soccer player from Canada, earned a hat trick for the Democrats to keep the game close and had two other miraculous shots on goal that barely missed the mark.

This article was provided by The Associated Press.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

  • What are your thoughts on government officials teaming up with professional athletes to raise money for youth soccer programs (ex. it’s a powerful partnership, it’s a commendable effort)? Do you think government officials teaming up with organizations is necessary to make projects like this successful? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • What kind of organization would you like your local government to team up with (ex. an organization for senior citizens, a mental health organization)? What impact do you think this will create in the said organization? Discuss.

Discussion B

  • In your opinion, what factors contribute to the growing popularity of a sport worldwide (ex. the success of individual athletes, the enthusiasm and support of fans)? What particular sport in your country do you want to be popular at a global level? Discuss.
  • What do you think are the advantages of promoting sports participation among young people? How do you think it contributes to their overall growth and personal development? Discuss.