CHICAGO-The United States soccer team was given the presidential seal of approval on Thursday before heading for the World Cup.
The squad met U.S. President Barack Obama and former President Bill Clinton at the White House on Thursday, posing for photographs and swapping jokes about the teamâ€™s apparel.
â€œI just want to say how incredibly proud we are of the team. Everybody is going to be rooting for you,â€ Obama said.
â€œAlthough sometimes we donâ€™t remember here in the United States, this is going to be the biggest world (stage) and youâ€™re going to be representing all of us. We are incredibly proud of what youâ€™ve done already.â€
Clinton, recently appointed to the U.S. bid team hoping to secure hosting rights to the 2018 or 2022 World Cup, joined the irreverent mood with a wisecrack about the playerâ€™s fashion sense.
â€œI want to be on this team just for the shoes,â€ he said. â€œThis is the only team that Iâ€™ve ever seen that had these cool shoes.â€
Goalkeeper Tim Howard said all the players got a real kick out of meeting Obama. The USâ€™ first game is against England on June 12.