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Saturday, March 13, 1999 Published at 19:23 GMT

World: Americas

Charles pitches in on Uruguay visit

Greeting players during the stadium visit marking the country's support for England's World Cup bid

Prince Charles took to a football pitch as part of his visit to Uruguay.

He dropped in to the country's national soccer stadium to watch part of a match involving some of Uruguay's football stars.

While meeting players on the pitch at the Estadio Centenario in the capital Montevideo, one passed the ball to the prince, and he side-footed it back.

Greeted by children

The prince also shook hands with children from poor areas of the city, who are involved in a scheme similar to the Prince's Trust which uses football to keep them off the streets.

[ image: Children flocked to meet the prince]
Children flocked to meet the prince
The stadium was where Uruguay won the first World Cup final in 1930.

It was part of the prince's programme because Uruguay has indicated that it will support England's bid to host the World Cup in 2006.

Football shirts

During his visit, he was presented with two Uruguay football shirts for Prince William and Prince Harry.

Prince Charles left to travel to Punta del Este, a popular Uruguayan beach resort along the country's Atlantic coast.

There, he was expected to tour a naval base housing helicopters donated to Uruguay by Britain. He was also to visit an art museum.

[ image: Prince Charles will take Uruguay football shirts home]
Prince Charles will take Uruguay football shirts home
Prince Charles was due to arrive at the Falkland Islands on Saturday evening for the final leg of his eight-day South American tour.

The Falklands visit is intended to underline the UK's commitment to the islands. After arriving at Mount Pleasant airport, the prince is due to lay a wreath at the 1982 Liberation Monument in the capital Stanley.

The issue is still a sensitive one, and on Wednesday there were protests during the Prince's visit to the Argentine capital Buenos Aires.

Angry crowds

At one stage riot police had to use tear gas and water cannon to disperse hundreds of demonstrators.

While the Prince's call for the Falklands to be allowed to live peacefully under British rule caused some anger in political circles.

For the most part though, the Prince was given a warm welcome.

On his visit to the Falklands he due to travel to every part of the islands, using a helicopter for speed.

There are no plans for any formal speeches, with the point of the prince's visit being to meet as many of the islanders face to face as possible.

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