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U.S. Soccer Team

SORRY We Dissed

Our Troops

6/13/2012 10:04 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0612_us_soccer_team_twitter_guatemala_cityThe U.S. soccer team insists ... they didn't mean to snub American troops at a Guatemalan airport Monday -- blowing past the soldiers' big welcoming party for the team -- so the players are apologizing.

Team America flew in for a World Cup qualifying match against Guatemala -- and troops stationed in the Central American country came to greet them on the tarmac and cheer them on to victory.

But when the team got off the plane ... they made a beeline for the bus, not saying a word to the soldiers ... not even a "thank you." The troops were understandably insulted.

The soldiers' friends and family took to Facebook to express their disgust -- writing messages like, "What a disgrace that a team that wears our American colors can't take 5 minutes to acknowledge the soldiers that fight for what those colors represent."

Now, a rep for the team tells TMZ, "The players and staff were simply unsure of the correct protocol in terms of engaging the military members on arrival to Guatemala ... [the players] weren't sure if they were welcoming them or providing security."

We're told their apology went over pretty well -- no hard feelings. (FYI -- Guatemala tied the game last night with a late goal in the 83rd minute. Boo.)

For more sports stories, check out tmzsports.com!
194 COMMENTS

No Avatar
91.

Hotter     

Only faccia da culo play soccer... Real Americans play Baseball

776 days ago
92.

Illbop    

We're talkin about some young guys...who pobably have never encountered Miltary figures.

Given the way they're staioned, I wouldnt know what to do, either.

What, were they supposed to do the 'jump in the air sideways chest bump' like a touchdown was just scored?

776 days ago
93.

NotForSale    

The United States has a soccer team? Ah soccer, the 7th most popular sport in the States just edging out bowling.

Knock Knock...Who's there?
USA Soccer....USA Soccer who?
Exactly

776 days ago
94.

richard mcenroe    

Of course they didn't know what the "protocol" was! Buncha metrosexual drama queens whose greatest athletic skill is faking an injury to draw a foul call. Probably never saw a live soldier before.

Weird though, you can go to any airport in the US and lots of perfectly ordinary people seem to have no trouble with the "protocol" at all.

776 days ago
95.

e33    

I gotta find a video of this. I think the troops are butt-hurt. It's a job guys, you don't have to be thanked. But I'm willing to bet some of the players acknowledged the troops. That's why I'm going to find a video.

776 days ago
96.

Cassie    

Its funny how completely UNTRUE this is. Some of the players posted pictures on their twitter with the troops. Hugging and chatting them up.

776 days ago
97.

Paul    

You guy are crazy if you believe that they were snubbed. Some of the USMNT players are sons of servicemen. US Soccer has been to Germany and visited troops are Ramstein AFB when they played in Germany for the 2006 World Cup. They visiting an Air Force Base in Tampa before their WCQ last week. A player even tweeted about players meeting the troops on arrival. There are 3 players that went to Guatemala whose fathers were in the military. Don't believe this crap that TMZ spews using Facebook and Instagram as sources.

https://twitter.com/NickRimando/status/211935752240640000
https://twitter.com/TBoyd91/status/210826281711964164
http://bit.ly/KmFD5e

776 days ago
98.

Shannon    

Get your facts right before commenting. Our backup keeper tweeted a pic of our players posing for photos with our troops. This is about 3 days after 2 of our players, Terrance Boyd and Michael Bradley went to MacDill AFB to greet some troops and invite them to be honorary captains. Poor reporting and poor form. https://twitter.com/NickRimando/status/211935752240640000 & http://www.ussoccer.com/Social/MNT-Blog.aspx?plckController=Blog&plckBlogPage=BlogViewPost&UID=1a697a53-a181-4302-aa61-f454d97c88fd&plckPostId=Blog%3a1a697a53-a181-4302-aa61-f454d97c88fdPost%3a0c1bd6ae-f46d-4dc4-b566-eaae7ff25f4a&plckScript=blogScript&plckElementId=blogDest

776 days ago
99.

Franko    

No surprise there. Those soccer players have thought of nothing else but soccer for most of their lives, the self absorbed twits. I thank every soldier I see, everywhere I go. Thanks again troops.

776 days ago
100.

asdf    

What a BS story. You people are morons. The troops were clearly snubbed, I mean it's not like there's a picture out there of players with the troops or anything- OH WAIT! THERE IS! http://distilleryimage8.s3.amazonaws.com/d029a648b34411e19dc71231380fe523_7.jpg

776 days ago
101.

Dani    

Providing security??? They can look at the soldiers, smile, wave, say thank you.... this is terrible. Such a disgrace.

776 days ago
102.

Dani    

BTW, there's no "protocol' to common decency, nevermind respect!!

776 days ago
103.

Ashley    

THATS ****ING SAD!!!!! MY FATHER IS A RETIRED IRAQ VET AND IF HE WAS EVER DISRESPECTED IN THAT WAY IN FRONT OF ME I MAY HAVE JUST PULLED A GUN ON THOSE INCONSIDERATE SELFISH DOUCHBAGS!!!!! THEY DONT UNDERSTAND WHAT ITS LIKE TO HAVE OTHER PEOPLE FIGHT FOR THEIR FREEDOM. WE SHOULD SEND THEIR ASSES OUT IN THE FIELD AND LET THEM GET SHOT AT AND SEE HOW MUCH THEY LIKE IT. **** THOSE DUMB ASS SOCCER PLAYERS (COMING FROM A SOCCER PLAYER) THEY SHOULD PUT THERE DUMB ASSES ON THE FRONT LINE!!!!! **** SOCCER!!!! I LOVE MY TROOPS!!!!

776 days ago
104.

Ashley    

**** THOSE DUMB ASS SOCCER PLAYERS (coming from a dedicated soccer player) MY FATHER IS A RETIRED IRAQ VET WHO IS DISABLED AND IT MAKES ME SICK TO KNOW THESE SELFISH, INCONSIDERATE *******S CALLED SOCCER PLAYERS WOULD NOT ACKNOWLEDGE THEIR TROOPS!!! AND IT MAKES ME SICK OVER SOME OF THE COMMENTS WITH PEOPLE BACKING THE SOCCER PLAYERS!!!!!! The people who back the soccer players and not the troops deserve to be put on the front line themselves and see what its really ****ing like!! **** YOU'S ALL THAT SUPPORT THE DAMN SOCCER PLAYERS THAT DID THIS TO THOSE TROOPS!!! AND IF YOU HAVE A ****ING PROBLEM TELL ME DIRECTLY, DOUCHBAGS!!!!!

776 days ago
105.

mily raudales    

TMZ youre a ****ing joke. That is NOT what happened AT ALL https://twitter.com/NickRimando/status/211935752240640000 << Right there proves to you that the team did **** acknowledge the troops. You guys take one ****ing picture and blow it all out of porportion and the rest of you idiots that believe the garbage these *******s post are ****ing stupid. That is NOT what happened our team is full of well respected men some of whom have parents who served in our army. So STFU and stop trying to give my team a bad ****ing name.

776 days ago
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