See you in the Windy City, All-Stars.
Major League Soccer announced Tuesday that the 2017 MLS All-Star Game presented by Target will be played on Aug. 2 at Chicago's Soldier Field.
MLS Commissioner Don Garber was joined by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Fire owner and chairman Andrew Hauptman at Soldier Field to make the announcement, along with Michael Kelly (general superintendent and CEO of the Chicago Park District), Kara Bachman (executive director of the Chicago Sports Commission) and William White (vice president of marketing for Target).
The game — which will be broadcast live on FS1, UniMás and UDN in the United States, TSN and TVA Sports in Canada, and in more than 170 countries around the world — will be sponsored by Target for the first time since the retailer became an official partner with MLS earlier this month.
Soldier Field, with a capacity of 61,500, has played host to numerous soccer events, including games in the 1994 FIFA World Cup and 1999 FIFA Women's World Cup, CONCACAF Gold Cup matches, World Cup qualifiers, and last summer’s Copa America Centenario. The venerable Chicago landmark also has a rich MLS legacy, as it was home to the Chicago Fire for the club's first four seasons, from 1998-2001, and then again from 2003-2005. The Fire owned a 62-23-10 record (.705 winning percentage) in their home games played at Soldier Field, a span which also includes the club's three appearances in MLS Cup.
While this is the first MLS All-Star Game to be played at Soldier Field, it's the second time the MLS summer showcase has been played in the Chicago area. In 2006, the MLS All-Stars defeated Chelsea FC 1-0 in a match played at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Ill. with Dwayne De Rosario scoring the game's only goal.
Chicago Fire head coach Veljko Paunovic will manage this year’s All-Star Team against an international opponent that will be announced at a later date.
The MLS All-Stars have faced international opponents 14 times in the event’s 22-year history, posting a record of 9-4-1 against some of the world’s most decorated clubs. Previous opponents have included Manchester United (2010 and 2011), Everton FC (2009), Chelsea FC (2006 and 2012), AS Roma (2013), Bayern Munich (2014), Tottenham Hotspur (2015), and most recently Arsenal FC (2016). Here's a complete look at past games:
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MLS All-Star Games
1996: East 3, West 2 (E. Rutherford, N.J.)
1997: East 5, West 4 (E. Rutherford, N.J.)
1998: MLS USA 6, MLS World 1 (Orlando, Fla.)
1999: West 6, East 4 (San Diego, Calif.)
2000: East 9, West 4 (Columbus, Ohio)
2001: East 6, West 6 (San Jose, Calif.)
2002: MLS 3, U.S. National Team 2 (Washington, D.C.)
2003: MLS 3, CD Guadalajara 1 (Carson, Calif.)
2004: East 3, West 2 (Washington, D.C.)
2005: MLS 4, Fulham FC 1 (Columbus, Ohio)
2006: MLS 1, Chelsea FC 0 (Bridgeview, Ill.)
2007: MLS 2, Celtic FC 0 (Commerce City, Colo.)
2008: MLS 3, West Ham United FC 2 (Toronto, Ont., Canada)
2009: MLS 1, Everton FC 1 (Everton 4-3 pen) (Sandy, Utah)
2010: MLS 2, Manchester United FC 5 (Houston, Texas)
2011: MLS 0, Manchester United FC 4 (Harrison, N.J.)
2012: MLS 3, Chelsea FC 2 (Chester, Pa.)
2013: MLS 1, AS Roma 3 (Kansas City, Kan.)
2014: MLS 2, FC Bayern Munich 1 (Portland, Ore.)
2015: MLS 2, Tottenham Hotspur 1 (Denver, Colo.)
2016: MLS 1, Arsenal FC 2 (San Jose, Calif.)