Soccer United Marketing (SUM) today announced that nine-time European club champions Real Madrid will play two games in July in a tour of the United States. The Spanish club, featuring a selection of the greatest players in the world, will face Mexican power CD Guadalajara in Chicago's Soldier Field on Saturday, July 16 (5:30 p.m. CT / 6:30 p.m. ET) followed by a match against Landon Donovan and the Los Angeles Galaxy at The Home Depot Center on Monday, July 18 or Tuesday, July 19 (7:30 p.m. PT / 10:30 p.m. ET) with the latter date to be confirmed in the coming days. The game in Chicago will be the second game of a doubleheader that kicks off with the nationally televised MLS regular season clash between the Chicago Fire and Columbus Crew (ESPN2 at 3:00 p.m. CT / 4:00 p.m. ET).
Real Madrid, winners of a record 29 Spanish league titles, is widely recognized as the world's most storied and star-studded soccer club. The Spanish giants make their first trip to the United States since August 2002 when they played Italy's AS Roma at Giants Stadium. Led by Brazilian head coach Vanderlei Luxemburgo, Real Madrid features several of the world's soccer superstars popularly known as the "galacticos": David Beckham (England), Ronaldo (Brazil), Zinedine Zidane (France), Luis Figo (Portugal), Michael Owen (England), Roberto Carlos (Brazil) and captain Raul (Spain). Following the games in the United States, Real Madrid will continue its preseason preparations in the Far East, with matches scheduled against local sides in China and Japan.
Club Deportivo Guadalajara, known as Chivas de Guadalajara, will travel to Chicago to face Real Madrid in preparation for its 2005 Apertura Mexican league season. Chivas will be coming off a historic run in the prestigious Copa Libertadores, the regional championship for clubs from South America and Mexico. Chivas Guadalajara has reached the Copa Libertadores semifinals and on Thursday, June 23 they face Brazilian team Atletico Paranaense in the first leg of their semifinal series. One of Mexico's most popular clubs with a policy of fielding only Mexican players, Chivas Guadalajara features many of the top national team players to emerge from Mexico including: goalkeeper Oswaldo Sanchez, Ramon Morales, Omar Bravo, Adolfo "Bofo" Bautista and Carlos Salcido. The team, currently led by head coach and former Chivas player Benjamin Galindo, has captured 10 Mexican league titles and seven CONCACAF Champions Cups in its history.
The Los Angeles Galaxy, currently in second place in Major League Soccer's Western Conference, are one of the most successful clubs in MLS history. Winners of the 2000 CONCACAF Champions Cup, the 2001 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup and MLS Cup 2002, the Galaxy are led by several of the top players in the U.S. and CONCACAF region. Among them are Donovan (USA), Guillermo "Pando" Ramirez (Guatemala), Pablo Chinchilla (Costa Rica), Tyrone Marshall (Jamaica), Cobi Jones (USA) and Jovan Kirovski (USA). The Galaxy, the only club which has never failed to qualify for the MLS Cup Playoffs in the League's first nine seasons, are undefeated at home this year in MLS (6-0-2 record) under the direction of head coach Steve Sampson.
The Galaxy join the Chicago Fire and D.C. United with matches against storied European squads this summer. The Chicago Fire will meet UEFA Champions League runners-ups AC Milan of Italy on Wednesday, July 27 at Soldier Field while D.C. United hosts English Premier League champions Chelsea at FedEx Field on Thursday, July 28 (8:00 p.m. ET on ESPN2). Those matches precede the 2005 Sierra Mist MLS All-Star Game on Saturday, July 30, when the best of MLS take on English Premier League club Fulham in Columbus, Ohio (3:30 p.m. ET live on ABC Sports).
Ticket information for both Real Madrid games follows below:
REAL MADRID VS. CHIVAS GUADALAJARA / CHICAGO FIRE vs. COLUMBUS CREW
Saturday, July 16 at Soldier Field (3:00 p.m. CT / 4:00 p.m. ET):
Tickets to the Fire's international doubleheader, which range in price from $40-$125, will go on sale to the general public on Saturday, June 25 at 12:00 p.m. CT and can be purchased by calling Ticketmaster at 312-559-1212 or at www.ticketmaster.com. Fans can also purchase tickets at the Fire Ticket Office at Soldier Field this Sunday, June 26 during the Fire's game against Real Salt Lake beginning at 6:00 p.m. CT. For information, fans can call 1-888-MLS-FIRE. A limited number of suites will be available for this game and can be acquired by contacting the Fire's Premium Seating Department at 312-705-7230 for more information.
REAL MADRID VS. LOS ANGELES GALAXY
Monday, July 18 or Tuesday, July 19 at The Home Depot Center (7:30 p.m. PT, 10:30 p.m. ET):
The Los Angeles Galaxy are now offering an exclusive pre-sale opportunity for the Galaxy's match vs. Real Madrid at The Home Depot Center beginning today. Complete details on pricing for pre-sale tickets are available by calling the Galaxy Ticket Office toll-free at 1-877-3GALAXY. Prices range from as low as $50 to $150. Tickets will go on sale through TicketMaster starting on Thursday, June 30, 2005, to order tickets fans can do so through TicketMaster via phone at 213-480-3232 or 714-740-2000 or by logging on to www.ticketmaster.com.