The Real Theater of Dreams

When talking about soccer, we all have a tendency to get a bit overwhelmed by transfer budgets, sponsorship contracts and wage allowances. The modern game is one dominated by a never-ending news cycle that’s difficult to avoid; one in which is cynicism has a certain inevitability. But while FIFA officials and fascist fans conspire to drag us down, soccer remains a children’s game; a fact that was made clear in Portland this afternoon.

Teaming up with the Make-A-Wish foundation, the Portland Timbers gave 8-year old Atticus Lane-Dupre, who was diagnosed with Cancer last fall, a moment in the spotlight. Alongside teammates from his local youth soccer side, the Green Machine, Atticus was invited to Jeld-Wen Field for a scrimmage in front of more than 3,000 fans against a group of select players from the Timbers starting eleven.

Backed by flares, signs and a variety of G-rated chants, the Green Machine took down the Timbers 9-8, with four goals coming by way of Atticus himself. Don’t let the television coverage or blogs fool you: the heart of soccer emanated from the Pacific Northwest today.

Check out the photos above (video here) and let me know whether it’s just me, or if AFR headquarters are especially dusty this afternoon. [Posted by Maxi

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