Midfield General

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Epic Soccer-Like Battles of History

Here's our martial World Cup wrap-up -- where the beautiful game is just war by other means.

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And the Winner Is… Schland

In case you couldn’t tell, a new Germany has won the World Cup.

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So Far Away — and So Close

Why Germans and Argentines have so much in common, even in soccer.

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Avoiding the Messi Curse

For Argentina's soccer team, like its economy, diversification is the key to success.

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No One Cares About Third Place

In soccer or in war, a bronze medal isn’t worth much.

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The GNOE’s Last Hurrah

Surprise -- there are limits to how well politics and economics can predict World Cup matches.

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Pragmatism Is the New Orange

As a football team and as a people, the Dutch have replaced style with staying power.

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Don’t Win for Me Argentina

The Argentine government’s exploitation of football would make a World Cup victory bittersweet.

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Human Rights Hypocrisy

If chants and protests in Brazil left egg on FIFA’s face, Russia and Qatar are cooking up an omelet.

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Bye-Bye, Brazil

Brazil’s stunning exit from the World Cup brings its other problems back into focus.

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The Star Who Never Played at the World Cup

Alfredo Di Stéfano was a man without a country who may have played for three.

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What Happened to Picardía?

Argentina has made it to the semifinals of the World Cup without its usual tricks.

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It’s All Fun and Games Until Someone Loses a Vertebra

Neymar’s injury shows what happens when soccer enters a bad equilibrium.

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Blame the Foreigner

In soccer, as in politics, plenty of Russians think the root of all evil lies in the West.

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A Game Rigged From the Top Down

Match-fixing by soccer players is the least of the sport’s problems.

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Brazilian Soccer Takes a Tumble

Failure in this year’s biggest club competition shows money isn’t everything.

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Why Is This World Cup So Awesome?

Hint: It’s the goals. But that's not the whole story.

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How the Pivot to Asia Could Ruin American Soccer

German-Americans raised on U.S. bases in soccer’s Fatherland have carried the team to the Round of 16. Can our Asian allies really produce the soccer stars of tomorrow?

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Argentina’s Soccer Is More Coherent Than Its Politics

Want to find out what an Argentine politician stands for? Ask him about soccer.

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It’s Okay to Have Mixed Feelings About Luis Suárez

Just like in politics and law, saying otherwise won’t do anyone any good.