President Barack Obama called U.S. men’s national team captain Clint Dempsey and goalie Tim Howard Wednesday to commend them on their heroics in the World Cup.
“I just wanted to call and say you guys did us proud,” Obama told the players. “To see the way you guys captured the hearts and imaginations of the whole country is unbelievable.”
“Clint, you were fantastic. And Tim, I don’t how you’re gonna survive the mobs when you come back home, man,” he joked. “You’re gonna have to shave your beard so they don’t know who you are.”
Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel also gave Howard a ring Wednesday to thank him for “defending USA.” The Wikipedia page for secretory of defense had been briefly edited to give Hagel’s title to Howard after his impressive 16-save performance Tuesday against Belgium. The U.S. ultimately lost the match 2-1.
— U.S. Dept of Defense (@DeptofDefense) July 2, 2014
Catherine Thompson is a senior editor for Talking Points Memo in New York City. She came to the site in 2013 and reported on national affairs. Previously, she worked as a research assistant to investigative reporter Wayne Barrett. She can be reached at email@example.com.