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Aston Villa's North American Tour On Hold

trinity road stand Aston Villa's North American Tour On Hold

Plans for Aston Villa’s North American tour this July may be rescheduled or postponed depending on whether UEFA awards Villa the Fair Play Award and thus entry into next season’s UEFA Cup.

The Fair Play Award is given to teams who display positive play, crowd behaviour and respect for referees. If awarded to Aston Villa, Martin O’Neill’s side will play their UEFA Cup first round qualifying matches on July 19 and July 24 or 25, while the second round qualifying matches would be on July 31 or August 1 and August 7 or August 8.

Aston Villa is currently scheduled to play Toronto FC on July 25 and Columbus Crew on July 28. The decision by UEFA whether to grant Villa the Fair Play Award will be made on Tuesday.

According to O’Neill as quoted in the Birmingham Mail newspaper, “Qualifying for the UEFA Cup would change all our pre-season plans.”

If Aston Villa does play its preseason friendlies in the States, it looks very likely that the club will sport its new Nike kit as well as spend time at the Cleveland Browns training facility. O’Neill has visited the facility before with Celtic and has been very impressed.

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About Christopher Harris

Founder and publisher of World Soccer Talk, Christopher Harris is the managing editor of the site. He has been interviewed by The New York Times, The Guardian and several other publications. Plus he has made appearances on NPR, BBC World, CBC, BBC Five Live, talkSPORT and beIN SPORT. Harris, who has lived in Florida since 1984, has supported Swansea City since 1979. He's also an expert on soccer in South Florida, and got engaged during half-time of a MLS game. Harris launched EPL Talk in 2005, which was rebranded as World Soccer Talk in 2013.
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