World CupLA Times sportswriter J.A. Adande, on an early World Cup moment:
I went out to restaurant patio for a meal, and saw a couple of tables filled with Czech Republic fans in their team's red jerseys. A little while later one of their jersey-clad buddies came up, triumphantly waving an American flag. That got the attention of an American sitting a few tables away, so the Czech guy took the flag over to him and let the American wave it. Then they took pictures together. Pretty soon the whole Czech group was over there posing for pictures. The American sent up a U!S!A! chant, quickly drowned out by cries of "Czech Republic." All in good fun.
They started chatting, effectively crawling their way through the slight language barrier. I only made out two words: "Dominik Hasek."
Pretty soon they were buying a round of drinks and raising toasts to each other. Now that's what makes it the World Cup.
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The story so farSeptember 2004