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Watch: Denver Camel Has Better Touch On Wings Than Pulisic vs. Canada

Sprout the critically endangered Bactrian camel showed some serious skills at the Denver Zoo.

The USMNT was humbled by a superior Canada 2-0 on Sunday in World Cup qualifying. The best American male player, Christian Pulisic, was largely ineffective during the massive showdown between the top two teams in Concacaf right now. The Chelsea winger attempted four dribbles, failing to complete a single one. 

Maybe Pulisic should’ve taken some notes from Sprout the camel.

Sprout is a breed of critically endangered Bactrian camel who makes her home at the Denver Zoo. She was spotted playing soccer on Sunday and showed more skill on the wings of her enclosure than Pulisic did on Sunday.

Camel Playing Soccer At Denver Zoo

That stepover at about 10 seconds in the video was the best U.S. soccer highlight of the weekend, hoofs down. 

This wasn’t the first time Sprout has played soccer, and it shows. Back in 2020, Sprout played soccer with her friend Hagrid as a six-month-old calf, because you’ve gotta start young.

Hopefully Pulisic and his American teammates turn things around as they head to Minnesota to face Honduras on Wednesday. The temperatures at kickoff from Saint Paul are expected to be in the single digits, so players on both sides (and the fans in the stands) will probably be wishing they had thick hair like Sprout. 

Fun fact: Though most camels today live in desert climates, they evolved for severe winters. The camel’s broad feet made it easier to traverse snow, not sand, and its humps stored fat for when winters made food scarce. 

Here’s more of Sprout playing around in snow, along with her friends at the Denver Zoo. And if you work for the Denver Zoo, I’d love a free pass to say hello to Sprout and Co., though I think I’d rather go when it’s a bit warmer out. 

Side note: Does ABC News’ social media manager just trawl the social feeds of zoos across the country for the latest cute animal videos? What a sweet job that would be.

One last fun fact: Speaking from experience, camels are fun to ride in the desert, but I would not suggest kissing them on the mouth.

Camel Playing Soccer

Photo: Travis Yoesting

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