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Obama praises Team USA in phone calls

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama commended the U.S. men's soccer team for making their country proud in the World Cup tournament in Brazil, during an Oval Office phone call with two of the team's most celebrated players.

     Obama called goalkeeper Tim Howard and team captain Clint Dempsey the day after the U.S. team came tantalizingly close to victory before being knocked out of the competition by Belgium in a 2-1 extra-time loss. Obama said this year was the first time the U.S. team had the entire nation truly focused on the contest.

     Some 21 million people in the U.S. watched the Americans' loss on Tuesday.

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