Six Premier League clubs are participating in a US preseason tournament this summer, according to several sources.
While the complete list of teams involved has not been finalized as of press time, they are believed to be Chelsea, Newcastle United, Aston Villa, Brighton and Hove Albion, Brentford, and Fulham. A joint announcement from the Premier League and NBC Sports is expected later this week.
Shearer and Cahill in support of summer tour
World Soccer Talk recently asked all-time record Premier League goalscorer Alan Shearer about the idea of clubs playing a preseason tournament in the United States.
“I definitely would support that,” Shearer told World Soccer Talk. “I think it’s important that you take your club worldwide. You give fans who support you from afar an opportunity to come see you, so I’d definitely be open to that.”
Similarly, former Chelsea defender Gary Cahill was supportive of the idea.
“It boosts the Premier League over in America more,” Cahill told World Soccer Talk. “It was 10 years ago when I first came over. From the first time I came over to the last time, it’s certainly starting to grow. You can really see the following of the Premier League over here. It’s important to continue growing that.”
Premier League US tournament to be played on East Coast
The concept of the Premier League US tournament is to see each club compete in a number of games against each other in a Summer Series. Matches are expected to be played in stadiums in the US eastern time zone in late July. The competition will go head-to-head against Leagues Cup for the attention of soccer fans.
For years, the Premier League have been contemplating having an American version of the Premier League Asia Trophy played on US shores.
However, the difference now is that NBC Sports have proven how successful their series of Premier League Fan Fests have been nationwide. The broadcaster has opened the eyes of Premier League executives who have seen first-hand how much of an impact the in-person events have been.
At the most recent Fan Fest in Orlando, we asked NBC Sports about the success of the events.
“We’ve put [the Premier League] on a level with every other major league sport in America as witnessed by the [Fan Fests],” said NBC Sports President of Acquisitions and Partnerships Jon Miller.
The combined marketing power of the Premier League plus NBC Sports should create an exciting experience for soccer fans in the US this summer. When you consider that Arsenal and Manchester United are also playing friendlies in the United States this summer, almost half of the Premier League clubs will be here this July.
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