Friday kickaround: Lionel Messi, Copa America, Women’s World Cup, Under-17 World Cup, D.C. United, D.C. United Women, Mia Hamm-Nomar Garciaparra, UVA Cavaliers

*With Lionel Messi in the spotlight, South America’s grand tournament, Copa America, commences in La Plata tonight with Argentina facing Bolivia (9 p.m. ET, Telefutura, univisionfutbol.com).

*The Women’s World Cup continues with the second Group B matches: Japan (1-0-0) vs. Mexico (0-0-1) at 9 a.m. (ESPN, Galavision, ESPN3.com) and England (0-0-1) vs. New Zealand (0-1-0) at noon (ESPN, ESPN3.com). The United States (1-0-0) is making final preparations for Saturday’s match against Colombia (0-1-0).

*The United States completed a disappointing showing at the Under-17 World Cup in Mexico with a 4-0 loss to Germany (3-0 at halftime) in the round of 16. It was the program’s worst defeat at the world championship in 18 years.

“In our country, the kids are still boys,” Coach Wilmer Cabrera said. “In other countries, they are already fighting for a spot in a professional team. We’re doing it, but it’s a process that takes time.”

*How was my Clyde Simms feature presented in the print edition? Here are the front page and inside images.

Much more.....

*D.C. United Women (3-3-2) stretched their unbeaten streak to three with a 2-1 home victory over the Long Island Rough Riders, the leaders in the W League’s Northeast Division.

*Mia Hamm and Nomar Garciaparra, America’s soccer/baseball couple, will stage their annual celebrity charity event (a 7-vs-7 soccer game) in Washington this year: July 31 at Kastles Stadium. All proceeds benefit the Mia Hamm Foundation and Children’s National Medical Center. Details and ticket information here.

*The University of Virginia has released the 2011 men’s schedule, which begins with the ACC/Big East Challenge at Maryland SoccerPlex.

Steven Goff is The Post’s soccer writer. His beats include D.C. United, MLS and the international game, as well as local college basketball.

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