The Sounders are not returning to Tucson to defend their Desert Diamond Cup title -- they already have announced their 2014 preseason tournament will be the Carolina Challenge Cup in Charleston, S.C.
However, the Sounders apparently will continue their habit of some Arizona training, and today announced a Feb. 8 friendly in Tucson against the Portland Timbers.
Here's some of the news from Arizona.
Today FC Tucson and Major League Soccer revealed the six-team field for the 2014 FC Tucson Desert Diamond Cup. The Chicago Fire, Chivas USA, Colorado Rapids, New England Revolution and Real Salt Lake will join FC Tucson of the USL’s Premier Development League in the third edition of the MLS Preseason tournament that will run from February 19 until March 1.
This year’s tournament will consist of four days of tripleheaders with the final day culminating with the championship game. The first three match days will be played at the brand new North Stadium at Kino Sports Complex. The finals, on March 1, will take place at Kino Veterans Memorial Stadium.
"We are thrilled to be in a multi-year partnership with Major League Soccer as the official Western Hub of MLS Preseason," said the FC Tucson ownership group in a joint statement. "We look forward to providing all 11 teams and their visiting fans a first-class soccer experience to launch the 2014 MLS campaign.”
Five additional MLS teams – Houston Dynamo, Portland Timbers, San Jose Earthquakes, Sporting Kansas City and Seattle Sounders FC – will participate in preseason friendlies in Tucson in early February. Vancouver Whitecaps FC will visit Tucson for a behind-closed-doors preseason friendly against the Dynamo.
A full schedule, including ticket information, for all of the MLS Preseason games in Tucson can be found at www.FCTucson.com.
Pre-Cup Schedule (all matches at North Stadium at Kino Sports Complex)(All times local MT)Saturday, February 1, 2014Portland Timbers vs. Sporting Kansas City, 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, February 8, 2014Houston Dynamo vs. San Jose Earthquakes, 3:00 p.m.Seattle Sounders FC vs. Portland Timbers, 6:00 p.m.
2014 FC Tucson Desert Diamond Cup(All times local MT)Wednesday, February 19, 2014 (North Stadium at Kino Sports Complex)Chivas USA vs. FC Tucson, 1:00 p.m.Colorado Rapids vs. Chicago Fire, 3:30 p.m.Real Salt Lake vs. New England Revolution, 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, February 22, 2014 (North Stadium at Kino Sports Complex)FC Tucson vs. Colorado Rapids, 1:00 p.m.Chicago Fire vs. Real Salt Lake, 3:30 p.m.New England Revolution vs. Chivas USA, 6:00 p.m.
Wednesday, February 26, 2014 (North Stadium at Kino Sports Complex)Chivas USA vs. Chicago Fire, 1:00 p.m.New England Revolution vs. Colorado Rapids, 3:30 p.m.Real Salt Lake vs. FC Tucson, 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 1, 2014 (Kino Veterans Memorial Stadium)5th Place vs. 6th Place, 2:30 p.m.3rd Place vs. 4th Place, 5:00 p.m.1st Place vs. 2nd Place, 7:30 p.m.
About Major League SoccerHeadquartered in New York City, Major League Soccer is the top-flight professional soccer league in the United States and Canada. MLS features many stars from the U.S., Canada, and around the world. Major League Soccer’s 18th season features 19 clubs each playing 34 regular-season matches. Those clubs include the Chicago Fire; Chivas USA; Colorado Rapids; Columbus Crew; D.C. United; FC Dallas; Houston Dynamo; 2012 MLS Cup champion LA Galaxy; Montreal Impact; New York Red Bulls; New England Revolution; Philadelphia Union; Portland Timbers; Real Salt Lake; San Jose Earthquakes; Seattle Sounders FC; Sporting Kansas City; Toronto FC and Vancouver Whitecaps FC. New York City FC was unveiled May 21, 2013. For more information about MLS, log on to the league’s official website at www.MLSsoccer.com.
About FC TucsonFC Tucson, established in 2010, is committed to bringing the highest caliber of competitive soccer to Tucson and establishing a successful and long-lasting source of pride for city, county, state and country. FC Tucson owns FC Tucson Soccer, Tucson’s top-level soccer team and the FC Tucson Desert Diamond Cup, a Major League Soccer pre-season tournament. Our owners, coaches, players and staff will play to win in sport, business and community connection. We recognize that our quality, commitment and passion for the game will guide our success and establish deep bonds with our stakeholders as we strive to be recognized and respected locally, nationally and internationally. In 2012, FC Tucson was named the PDL Rookie Franchise of the Year. To stay up to date on what is going on with the FC Tucson Desert Diamond Cup, check out the team’s website at www.fctucson.com. You can also visit the team’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/FCTUCSON and follow all of the news related to FC Tucson on Twitter at www.twitter.com/FCTucson.
About Kino Sports ComplexKino Sports Complex is the largest sports and entertainment venue in Pima County. The home of the Triple-A Tucson Padres baseball team and the FC Tucson soccer club includes the 11,000-seat Kino Veterans Memorial Stadium, a 2,000-seat North Grandstand soccer field and a 2,000-seat North Stadium under construction. Along with seven more baseball fields (four with lights), lighted softball fields, and four more soccer fields, it is a great fit for youth, amateur and professional sports, concerts, and community events. Visit www.kinosportscomplex.com or call (520) 546-5466.