Texas Wants to Know

Texas Wants to Know: How did North Texas become a hotbed for youth soccer?

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The U.S. Women's National Team starts its bid for a third straight World Cup title this month in Australia and New Zealand. The side has won four of the eight women's World Cups and can trace some of its roots back to North Texas.

When the U.S. women's team won the inaugural World Cup in 1991, it featured a pair of players from the Dallas Sting, including one who go on to become one of the greatest players in the nation's history: Richardson native Carla Overbeck.

"North Texas has always been a hotbed. The kids that come out of North Texas are really great soccer players and the knowledge that they have and the game technically -- it's exciting to see," Overbeck, now an assistant coach at Duke, said. "I'm just happy that I grew up there and was on a very good club team and was very fortunate throughout my career that I had North Texas to kind of fall back on."

But how did the Dallas-Fort Worth area, in a state that's obsessed with American football, become a hotbed of talent for what the rest of the world calls football?

"I think it's a lot of the coaches that laid the groundwork in the '80s," said Gavin Dawson, a club soccer coach with the Dallas Surf and one of the hosts of the G-Bag Nation on 105.3 The Fan. "You had a lot of guys that had come here after college and there was already a soccer movement. And I think them, along with the influence of immigration coming north of the border, brought a huge interest in soccer."

Host Baylee Friday also visits three current and former players from FC Dallas' club teams about what drives them to maintain the demanding schedule that soccer requires.

Listen to Texas Wants to Know in the Audacy app or wherever you get your podcasts.

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