Monday, 18 July 2011

The British Invasion Begins...

A selection of the English Premier League's teams have descended on America this summer, to tot up some pre-season friendlies.

Taking notice of the growing profile of football in the US, it seems some of our top teams are trying their best to get a slice of the pie.

Both Manchester's teams are currently in the States and United kicked off with a win. They drubbed New England Revolution 4-1, the goals coming from Owen (2), Macheda and Park. The Revs, who are managed by Liverpudlian legend Stevie Nicol, did grab a consolation goal via a Benny Feilhaber free-kick. But Ji-Sung Park made it four, with a well-worked goal laid on by Giggs (see video).

Meanwhile, City are involved in a friendly tournament called the Herbalife World Football Challenge. They will face a selection of MLS sides as well as a couple of Mexican teams, including: the Revs, Galaxy, the Whitecaps, the Fire, Philadelphia and from Mexico - CD Guadalajara and Club America (who City beat 2-0).

City will be playing in their new kit, unveiled this weekend by John Lennon-wannabe, Liam Gallagher.

Other clubs currently tearing it up stateside include Bolton Wanderers, West Brom and Newcastle, who won't be joined by Poundland Gangsta, Nile Ranger (right) and all-round villain, Joey Barton. They were refused entry to the US because of their criminal records. Barton tweeted something about "hypocrisy", but I think "common sense" sums up the Americans' stance on the issue a bit better.

Liverpool were expected to go to the US this summer, following the NESV takeover. But Standard Chartered - the Reds' shirt sponsor - are known to be keen to target the Asian market, and the team began their tour in China.

It is Manchester United though, who will see the most exciting of the MLS/EPL action this summer. They face the MLS All Stars at the end of the month, and will welcome the New York Cosmos to Old Trafford for Paul Scholes' testimonial this August.

Philip Wright-Lewis @P_W_L

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