The Austin Chronicle

Soccer Watch

By Nick Barbaro, May 28, 2004, Sports

The Austin Lightning were held to a disappointing 1-1 draw by the winless Laredo Heat on Friday, despite running up an astounding 33-9 advantage in shots and 21 corner kicks. This weekend they host a very good DFW Tornado squad Friday night, plus the midtable Nashville Metros Sunday afternoon. This'll be your last chance to see the Lightning at home until the end of June; they're on the road for the next three weekends. DFW: Fri., May 28, 7:30pm. Nashville: Sun., May 30, 2pm. House Park, 15th & Lamar. $6 ($4 ages 5-15, under 5 free).

The Lightning have added a familiar name to the roster: Gabe Jones, an All-American at St. Edwards, whose pro résumé includes the Austin Lone Stars, the MLS Dallas Burn, and a stint in Germany.

FC Porto smothered Monaco in the European Champions League final on Wednesday night, 3-0, to take the continent's most prestigious title. The Portuguese champions, last year's UEFA Cup titlists, shut down a high-scoring Monaco attack and mixed in an opportunistic counterattack to lift the cup.

And with Porto the champions of the European club season, the attention turns to the national teams, as Euro2004, the quadrennial continental championship, kicks off in two weeks with 16 countries competing for bragging rights in – of all places – Porto. Want to get a headstart on the festivities? Head down to Fadó this Sunday, May 30, for their Euro 2004 Fantasy Football Kick-Off Party. Sign up at, and get a free Lowenbrau on the pub, plus a chance at cool prizes. Televised live coverage begins June 12 and continues through the final on July 4.

David Beckham will captain England in Euro2004, which may be just what he needs, as his dismal time with Real Madrid may be over after just one season. "Los Galacticos," one of the most star-studded teams ever assembled for any sport, stumbled to the end of the Spanish season with five straight losses, a third-place finish, and embarrassing early exits from both Europe and the league cup. South Africa has won the bid to host the 2010 World Cup, beating out Egypt and Morocco for the honor of being the first nation to host the games in Africa.

Are you a player? Two major tournaments have just been scheduled for this summer in Austin. The Got Milk? 3v3 Soccer Shootout will be July 31-Aug. 1 at Old Settlers Park in Round Rock ( for info), and the US Youth Soccer Southern Regional Championships, part of a huge national competition (, are June 24-30 at NE Metro Park in Pflugerville.

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