Since when do red-blooded Americans give a McDonald's Happy Meal about soccer? Since this World Cup, apparently.  The New Republic's Howard Wolfson says the "surest sign that soccer has hit the big time in the States" is that "Matt Drudge thinks so." Correct: the conservative creator and curator of The Drudge Report is featuring the (apparently) yuppie-and-immigrant-beloved "beautiful game" on his page.

Last night the Drudge Report website led with the speculation that World Cup organizers might ban the vuvuzela horns.  Earlier in the day he led with a picture of poor Robert Green looking hapless. You may not think much of his politics, but Drudge still has an uncanny ability to shape and direct traditional news coverage.  He knows his audience, and if there wasn't a market for soccer in the States, he wouldn't be featuring it on his site.
Is soccer starting to go mainstream? It used to be unthinkable. But Wolfson says it's happening: "Soccer is starting to seep into the popular consciousness. Drudge has got his finger on the pulse--and its beginning to beat faster."