Annual Soccer Tournament Celebrates Diversity

August 7, 2019 at 10:30 AM

Credit: Marc Piscotty
Credit: Marc Piscotty
Credit: Marc Piscotty
Credit: Marc Piscotty
Credit: Marc Piscotty
Credit: Marc Piscotty
Credit: Marc Piscotty
Credit: Marc Piscotty
Credit: Marc Piscotty
Credit: Marc Piscotty
Credit: Marc Piscotty
Credit: Marc Piscotty
Credit: Temi Osifodunrin
Credit: Temi Osifodunrin
Credit: Temi Osifodunrin
Credit: Temi Osifodunrin
Credit: Temi Osifodunrin
Credit: Temi Osifodunrin
Credit: Temi Osifodunrin
Credit: Temi Osifodunrin
Credit: Temi Osifodunrin
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On July 28, FC Denver defeated Ghana, 3-2, and became the 2019 International Heritage Cup Denver champions.

While this might sound like a soundbite coming from the World Cup level, it’s actually a local event that shares all the passion of its bigger brother.

Founded in 2011, the Heritage Cup is an annual World Cup-style tournament during the last weekend in July at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. It promotes outreach and unity within the metro area’s immigrant, refugee and urban communities.

The mostly adult players join teams representing various countries. While the tournament celebrates diversity and expresses a common love for the game of soccer, it’s also serious business, attracting pros like Phillip Boampong and Tesho Akindele in previous years.

FC Denver this year had to survive a tough roster of 16 teams that covered the globe from Iran to Ethiopia. Following their victory, the team was back at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park on Aug. 3, receiving honors before the Colorado Rapids took on Montreal Impact.

“Our goal annually is to integrate our different and very diverse communities through the game of soccer, highlight the incredible talents in our communities and have fun doing it,” said Heritage Cup founder Temi Osifodunrin. “This year was a success!”