Relevent Sports, a division of RSE Ventures – a multi-national sports and entertainment venture firm with a focus on new technologies – today announced that Manchester United and reigning Liga MX champion Club América will face-off on Friday, July 17 at CenturyLink Field in Seattle as part of the 2015 International Champions Cup North America Presented by Guinness. Kickoff for the contest is set for 8:00 p.m. PT.
“We are excited to welcome Manchester United and Club América to Seattle this summer,” said Sounders FC Owner Adrian Hanauer. “Seattle is home to the top domestic soccer in North America, and CenturyLink Field has a rich history of hosting high-profile international soccer events. We’re excited to continue that tradition this summer, and to offer our fans the ability to watch two of the most storied clubs in international football right here in our community.”
Ticketing details are set to be unveiled at a later date, with general information on the 2015 International Champions Cup North America available via the following URL: www.internationalchampionscup.com.
“We are incredibly excited to play an International Champions Cup match in the Pacific Northwest,” said Charlie Stillitano, Chairman of Relevent Sports. “Seattle is well-known for having one of the most passionate and knowledgeable fan bases in the United States, and hosting a world-class soccer event in Seattle is a natural fit.”
The 2015 International Champions Cup North America runs from July 11 – August 5 and features 17 matches played across 12 regions throughout the world. Each team plays four contests, and the club with the most points at the end of the tournament will be crowned champion. Each win in regulation results in three points and a draw goes straight to a shootout. The winning team in a shootout receives two points and the losing team receives one. The results from in-season Major League Soccer contests involving tournament participants will be used as part of official tournament scoring.
In total, 10 teams from across the globe, including England (Manchester United, Chelsea), Portugal (FC Porto), France (Paris Saint-Germain), Mexico (Club América), Spain (Barcelona), Italy (ACF Fiorentina) and the United States (San Jose Earthquakes, Los Angeles Galaxy and New York Red Bulls) will compete in the 2015 International Champions Cup North America. The participating teams have won a total of 91 domestic league titles, 98 domestic cup titles, six CONCACAF Champions League / CONCACAF Champions Cup titles and 10 UEFA Champions League titles. The teams feature nine of the 2014-2015 FIFA Ballon d'Or nominees, as well as 31 of the top 100 players in the world as chosen yearly by renowned English magazine FourFourTwo.
Arguably the most recognizable football club in the world, Manchester United is the most successful team in English league football and has been home to some of the game’s greats, such as Sir Bobby Charlton, George Best and Denis Law. The club is also incredibly successful off the field, having become the first sports franchise to be valued at over $3 billion, according to Forbes.
The record 20-time league title winners have sat atop English football for much of the last 25 years. During that time, some of the biggest names in world football – including Eric Cantona, David Beckham, Ryan Giggs, Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney – played under Sir Alex Ferguson, one of the most successful football managers of all time, who took charge of Manchester United in November 1986, before retiring in May 2013. Current manager Louis van Gaal took over the reins in the summer of 2014 following Ryan Giggs’ four-game stint in charge as caretaker manager and David Moyes’ departure toward the end of the 2013-2014 season. Giggs is now van Gaal’s assistant and remains the club’s record appearance-maker. The current squad features star strikers Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie, as well as British transfer record-signing Angel Di Maria.
“Manchester United has a great history of visiting Seattle, creating memorable experiences for players and fans that date back to the 1980s,” said Manchester United Group Managing Director Richard Arnold. “Tour 2015, presented by Aon, will allow the team to train at some of the best facilities in the world and play in front of thousands of passionate U.S. supporters at first-class stadiums. After this month’s Manchester derby broke records to become the most-watched Premier League match in U.S. cable television history, the club is excited to be returning to the United States at a time when the appetite for football is greater than ever.”
Club América boasts 98 years of history and 35 titles between domestic and international tournaments, including five CONCACAF championships and eight FIFA-recognized international club trophies. Since its founding in 1916 by a group of young Mexican students attracted by the new sport of football, Club América has won the most titles (12) in the modern era of Mexican soccer, including an unforgettable 3-1 win over Tigres UANL in the 2014 Apertura Final.
In 2015, the International Champions Cup expands into new continents, as both China and Australia will host versions of the tournament during the summer. A.C. Milan, Inter Milan and Real Madrid will play in the International Champions Cup China in Shenzhen, Guangzhou and Shanghai that runs from July 25 – July 29. Real Madrid, Manchester City and AS Roma will play in the International Champions Cup Australia in Melbourne from July 18 – 24, providing even more fans from around the world the opportunity to see their favorite clubs live. Further details about the 2015 International Champions Cup can be found at www.internationalchampionscup.com.
ABOUT RELEVENT SPORTSRelevent Sports provides an innovative approach to building a soccer presence in the United States and around the globe. Relevent Sports showcases the best matchups and tournaments in soccer featuring the top clubs, international teams and players. In addition to hosting the International Champions Cup annually every summer, Relevent Sports works closely with national teams including Brazil, Argentina and Portugal to host exhibition matches in major sports venues throughout the year. Utilizing brand development, grassroots planning, corporate sponsors, international touring and philanthropic initiatives, Relevent Sports promotes and grows the love of soccer worldwide.
ABOUT THE INTERNATIONAL CHAMPIONS CUPThe International Champions Cup is an annual summer soccer tournament organized by Relevent Sports, featuring the best clubs from around the world. A staple property of Relevent Sports and RSE Ventures, the International Champions Cup brings the best in soccer to iconic sports venues across North America, Australia, Europe and China.
Last year, the International Champions Cup featured premier European clubs including Manchester United, Liverpool, Real Madrid, Manchester City, AC Milan, Roma, Inter Milan and Olympiacos. The tournament, played across 13 North American cities, saw Manchester United go undefeated en route to the championship. The International Champions Cup also featured the largest attended soccer match in United States history, when 109,318 fans packed the “Big House” at the University of Michigan to witness Manchester United defeat Real Madrid. The inaugural tournament in 2013 featured eight clubs – Real Madrid, Juventus, Chelsea, Inter Milan, AC Milan, Valencia, Everton and the L.A. Galaxy. It concluded with Real Madrid’s victory over Chelsea in front of nearly 70,000 fans.
Since its inception in 2013, more than one million fans have packed stadiums to watch clubs compete in the International Champions Cup, along with more than 700 million households watching worldwide. In 2015, the tournament will expand to Asia and Australia, as it continues to grow rapidly and attract fans from all over the world.
ABOUT RSE VENTURESFounded in 2012 by Stephen M. Ross and Matt Higgins, RSE Ventures is a multi-national sports and entertainment venture firm with a focus on new technologies. RSE builds, owns and operates companies in sports, media, entertainment and technology, including Catalyst Media Group, VaynerMedia, Vayner/RSE, Relevent Sports, Ascendent Sports Group and the International Champions Cup.
ABOUT SEATTLE SOUNDERS FCWinner of the 2014 MLS Supporters’ Shield and four Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup championships (2009, 2010, 2011, 2014), Sounders FC is Seattle’s Major League Soccer franchise. With an ownership group led by Majority Owner and Hollywood executive Joe Roth, Owner and Seattle-based entrepreneur Adrian Hanauer, Owner and Seattle Seahawks Chairman Paul G. Allen and actor Drew Carey, the club received an MLS charter on November 13, 2007 and has reached the MLS Cup Playoffs in every year of its existence. Since the club’s debut MLS season in 2009, Sounders FC has set the standard for soccer support in North America, culminating in the top six single-season attendance totals in league history and an active streak of 111 consecutive MLS sellouts. Prior to joining MLS, the Seattle Sounders organization has been a part of the greater Seattle community and U.S. Soccer professional scene since 1974.
ABOUT CENTURYLINK FIELD CenturyLink Field is a multi-purpose stadium and exhibition center in downtown Seattle. CenturyLink Field serves as the home for the Seattle Seahawks of NFL and Seattle Sounders FC of Major League Soccer (MLS). It was originally called Seahawks Stadium but was renamed Qwest Field in June 23, 2004 when telecommunications carrier Qwest acquired the naming rights. It was then given its current name in June of 2011 after the acquisition of Qwest by CenturyLink. The complex
also includes the CenturyLink Field Event Center, a parking garage and a public plaza.