Real Madrid, Juventus, AC Milan, Inter Milan, Chelsea, Valencia and LA Galaxy, a list of internationally renowned teams and Everton’s potential opponents in this summers International Champions Cup. The fact that Everton have received an invite speaks volumes for the strides made by the club in the last 11 years under previous manager David Moyes.
The tournament which will take place over six American cities and one is Spain is seen by many as a forerunner to an annual pre-season tournament, featuring Europe’s finest, that will fill the summer void, and capture huge TV audiences, further boosting the coffers of the Worlds richest teams. Indeed a report featured in the most recent edition of the Mail on Sunday, suggests that Rupert Murdoch is prepared to invest his millions to ensure future tournaments are featured on his Sky and Fox TV networks.
Everton will start the tournament in San Francisco against the current Italian Champions Juventus. The victors of that tie will then face the winners of a match between the worlds biggest club, Real Madrid and David Beckham’s former club, LA Galaxy, with the two losers also facing up. That second round of fixtures takes place in Los Angeles. Finally, all eight teams head to Miami, where potential opponents for the Blues are Chelsea, AC Milan, Inter Milan or Valencia.
It promises to be an exciting tournament for all Evertonians and a significant number are expected to travel to the States to join the number of Blues based over in America. Those unable to travel, will be able to catch the action on EvertonTV or one of the major TV networks.
A tournament of this stature will do Everton no harm and will inevitably raise the profile of the football club. The clubs prolonged absence from the Champions League has made the Everton brand less well known around the world and this summers tournament represents a significant change to Everton’s normal pre-season preparation and would appear to be a conscious attempt by the clubs management to publicise the Blues to both potential players and dare I say, future investors.