Soccer-playing robots take the field in annual competition

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These soccer stars are very dependable — if not a little robotic — on the field.

The 2019 RoboCup, the world’s largest annual robotics competition, kicked off Thursday in Australia with robot teams from 30 countries vying in events including soccer, search-and-rescue missions, manufacturing and logistics and home-assistance challenges.

Created in 1997, the tournament is designed to advance robotics and artificial intelligence to a level capable of besting humans.

In terms of soccer, the goal is to have the robots beat their most talented human counterparts — the World Cup champs — by 2050.

The soccer matches at Sydney’s International Convention Centre feature robots of several sizes and include “humanoid” likenesses. The machines are separated into three categories: adults, teens and children, according to its website.

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