posterHave you heard the news? This year’s Dr. Pepper Dallas Cup, the world-renowned, international youth soccer tournament with alums like David Beckham and Wayne Rooney, is coming back to Dallas after seven years at Frisco’s FC Dallas stadium. Its headliner games will be played at the Cotton Bowl, with other matches taking place at UTD and Richland College. Back in the day, Lake Highlands High School’s Wildcat-Ram hosted the tournament, where it was standing room only with die-hard soccer fans.

Because of LH’s history with the tournament, many long-time volunteers and dedicated board members still live in our neighborhood. Several families, including my own, also host world-class referees each year from a variety of countries, including England. A month from now, the Kondrachs, the Baileys, the Hicks, the Hawkins and more will have 3-week additions to our households while “the lads” train physically, receive expert coaching and call games.

But that’s not the best part.

British refs at the StockyardsWhile they’re here, they get to experience all that’s great about Dallas (most have never been to America). More about that in future posts after they arrive, but let’s just say the first taste of guacamole usually blows their mind.

Assignments were made yesterday, and our family is on a five-year streak. Every year we’ve a lad named James. This year we have two.

You can read about the Toler lads being chosen to ref at Dallas Cup in feature articles in their neighborhood newspapers here: James Durkin is from Hampshire, James Scerri is from Staffordshire and Scott Campion is from the Isle of Mann. You’ll also be able to read more about their Dallas adventures here on the blog after their arrival in Lake Highlands.

You can find out more about Dr. Pepper Dallas Cup on their website here or their Facebook page here.  The tournament has an incredible list of elite international teams set to play in the Under 19 Gordon Jago Super Group, including Manchester United, Club America (Mexico), Fluminense (Brazil), Tigres (Mexico), Eintracht Frankfurt (Germany), Fulham FC (England), and Coritiba FC (Brazil).

toby dean leigh steve willOh, and if you see us out having dinner, please come over and say hello. The lads’ll be happy to meet some real Texans. I’m thinkin’ they’ll be the ones with the sunburns.