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Fulham Would Be Mad Not To Visit America This Summer

fulham crest Fulham Would Be Mad Not To Visit America This SummerYou’ve just escaped relegation on the last day of the season on goal difference. What are you going to do next? “I’m going to Disney World.” Or, at least, that should be the answer if you were Fulham Football Club.

Now, the timing is better than ever for Fulham to visit the United States this summer for a preseason tour. Fulham owner Mohamed Al-Fayed needs to capitalize on how his club has won the hearts and minds of so many neutral American soccer fans. If Fulham doesn’t visit the United States this summer, they’re missing out on the best opportunity the club will ever have to increase its fan base stateside.

The club has a wonderful opportunity to play in front of packed stadiums in the large cities in the U.S. With American players such as Kasey Keller, Clint Dempsey, Carlos Bocanegra, Brian McBride and Eddie Johnson, no other team has so much American presence in the Premier League. And with the U.S. economy down the toilet, now is the cheapest time in decades for an English club team to fly to America (plus American Airlines is a sponsor of Fulham).

The temptation for Fulham will be to fly to Asia for preseason friendlies, but the west London club would be in a long line of sides battling for the interest of fans in China and East Asia. Instead of doing that, why not be one of a small handful of Premier League clubs to invade the U.S. and to take advantage of a blossoming interest in your club? We wouldn’t mind being taken advantage of — trust me.

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. View all posts by Christopher Harris →
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14 Responses to Fulham Would Be Mad Not To Visit America This Summer

  1. Terry Anderson says:

    A very good idea. But they do not always get taken up. I am now retired to the Algarve but see the sense in your arguement. Well done.

  2. kat kid says:

    “We woudn’t mind being taken advantage of — trust me.”

    My, my Gaffer. Speak for yourself. You seem as tart as an 11th grader asked to prom by the captain of the football team.

    That said, Fulham have captured my cold, black heart and I think I may well adopt them as my EPL team. I will still enjoy the freedom of a neutral, but they inspired me with that magnificent climb from the drop this year.

  3. T says:

    I would love to see them come to Denver and put on a show at Dick’s Sporting Good’s park.

  4. Simon says:

    not sure just hoa many folk here would really rush out and see them – they aren’t the BIG FOUR and I was at DC UNited to see a paltry 8000 people watch BBurn V DC United about 3 or 4 years back.. not a great turnout and that lineup included Friedel. That said the league has grown a little and Fulham has a few more Americans…
    WOuld be interesting to see just how many hearts and minds would turn out.

  5. Kartik says:

    Gaffer,

    Good suggestion. Believe it or not as many message boards, websites and emails to my CSRN show indicate the hard core US National Team/MLS fan have now by and large adopted Fulham as “our team” in Europe. Not just in the EPL, in Europe. Fulham now can essentially close the market off for the foreseeable future which is music to my ears as sit currently in Asia, an ocean of Man U and nothing else. In N.America the non-MLS, only Euro fan will continue to support big clubs, but the MLS fan will watch Fulham. I know several people who have written me that they don’t watch the PL normally but were watching every Fulham match the last few weeks even if they had to go to a pub to find it.

    T, visiting DSG or Salt Lake has usually been a bad move for Euro clubs because of the altitude, and at DSG the wide pitch. Celtic looked dead after 40 minutes there last year and Everton lost to RSL simply because in the pre season you cannot keep up at altitude. So my guess is that even though Commerce City has the best football facility in the country (a stadium I so enjoy I am planning on going to another Rapids game late this year, flying cross country just to sit at that stadium) I doubt Fulham would visit after the Celtic experience last year.

  6. Matthew C says:

    Im an english guy moving to the U.S. this summer but i need to recommend you guys to http://www.fulhamusa.com . Great website to keep up to date fulham from a yank point of view.

  7. T says:

    Kartik,

    I know, I was at that game (btw I can’t stand the MLS All-Star vs. whichever-European-team games; they’re such a sham and a joke), and of course Celtic looked bad (altitude and pre-season form). I always thought the MLS should open a franchise in San Diego.

  8. Mookie says:

    @ T, I can’t wait until the mighty West Ham go to Toronto.:)

    I don’t think having clubs from England like Fulham will help too much. I don’t care how many Americans there are, you have the MLS anyways.

    They need a team like Liverpool or Arsenal to tour, not Fulham.

  9. Kartik says:

    Fulham as we discussed on this week’s American Soccer Show on CSRN has more American leadership influence than the majority of teams in MLS who are led by Argentine or whatever latin nationality player (mostly Argentine though) and Americans largely fill out the squads. You could argue Fulham is more American than any team in the US domestic first division! While that sounds great that is part of why I am so down on where the US National Team is headed unless MLS gets a grip soon.

  10. HatterDon says:

    This makes perfect sense to me — especially since I’m and American and a Fulham fan. It would be good to see a friendly scheduled with Houston Dynamo so that Deuce could play in front of his fellow Texans.

  11. timmyg says:

    I agree with Donny. Fulham HAVE to come stateside. I know I’ll go wherever they do…

    …as long as its on the East Coast.

  12. eplnfl says:

    Hey guys, going to join Fulham USA, which is a great website btw. Yes, Fulham should come to the USA, and the MLS All -Stars vs. a European team is a bad game.

    The one stop Fulham has to make is Chicago. It is the home of Brian McBride, Carlos Bocanegra played for the Fire, and Chicago is the home of US Soccer which may surprise many people. The US Soccer Federation is located just a few minutes away from Chicago’s Soldier Field and the wonderful lake front.

    How can we make sure that Fulham brings make our American players next year before we have FFC stamped on our foreheads.

  13. Amanda says:

    What a great idea, loved your post! I just responded with an article called, “Fulhamerica – Top 5 Reasons Why Fulham Should Tour America This Summer”, on my blog. Check it out at: http://www.amandavandervort.com/blog/2008/05/top-5-reasons-fulham-should-tour-america/

  14. The Gaffer says:

    Touche, Amanda. Great follow up article. Fellow EPL Talk readers should check out her web site at http://www.amandavandervort.com/ for some great articles including a fascinating interview with Emma Hayes.

    Cheers,
    The Gaffer

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