Previous
AS Roma
CSKA Moscow
5
1
FT
Game Details
Bayern Munich
Manchester City
1
0
FT
Game Details
Ajax Amsterdam
Paris Saint-Germain
1
1
FT
Game Details
Barcelona
Apoel Nicosia
1
0
FT
Game Details
Chelsea
Schalke 04
1
1
FT
Game Details
NK Maribor
Sporting Lisbon
1
1
FT
Game Details
Athletic Bilbao
Shakhtar Donetsk
0
0
FT
Game Details
FC Porto
BATE Borisov
6
0
FT
Game Details
Blackburn Rovers
Derby County
2
3
FT
Game Details
Nottingham Forest
Fulham
5
3
FT
Game Details
Fleetwood Town
Barnsley
0
0
FT
Game Details
FC Magna Wr. Neustadt
Rapid Vienna
1
5
FT
Game Details
SV Grodig
SC Rheindorf Altach
3
3
FT
Game Details
Montreal Impact
New York Red Bulls
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Bayamon FC
America
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Municipal
Real Espana
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Huachipato
U. Católica
1
0
LIVE 43'
Leg 1
Game Details
Universitario de Sucre
César Vallejo
10:00 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
River Plate
Godoy Cruz de Mendoza
12:15 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 0
Game Details
Libertad
Barcelona
12:15 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 1
Game Details
San Lorenzo
Defensa y Justicia
10:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Nueva Chicago
Boca Unidos
0
0
FT
Game Details
Huracán
Crucero del Norte
10:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Aldosivi
Douglas Haig
11:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Guarini A. Franco
Ferro Carril Oeste
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Independiente Rivadavia
All Boys
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Patronato
Atlético Tucumán
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Sarmiento de Junín
Santamarina
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Gimnasia y Esgrima de Jujuy
Instituto de Córdoba
12:30 AM GMT
Game Details
At. San Luis
Correcaminos
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Irapuato
Altamira
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Oaxaca
Lobos BUAP
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Chiapas
Veracruz
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Queretaro
U.A.N.L
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
U. de G.
Atlas
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Cruzeiro
Atletico Paranaense
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
EC Vitória
Fluminense FC
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Figueirense FC
Criciúma
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Sport
Internacional
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Botafogo
Bahia
1:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Coritiba FBC
São Paulo
1:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Palmeiras
Flamengo
1:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Alianza Lima
Inti Gas Deportes
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
12 de Octubre
Nacional
9:00 PM GMT
Game Details
FC Seoul
Western Sydney Wanderers
0
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Bay United
Mamelodi Sundowns
Postp
Game Details
Chippa United
Orlando Pirates
Postp
Game Details
Free State Stars
Moroka Swallows
Postp
Game Details
Mpumalanga Black Aces
Ajax Cape Town
Postp
Game Details
Silver Stars
Pretoria Univ
Postp
Game Details
SuperSport United
Bloem Celtic
Postp
Game Details
Alajuelense
Belen
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Patriotas F.C.
La Equidad
8:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 0
Game Details
Atlético Junior
Llaneros
11:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 1
Game Details
Boyacá Chicó FC
Once Caldas
12:30 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 2
Game Details
Deportes Tolima
Independiente Medellín
12:30 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 0
Game Details
Independiente Santa Fe
Cucuta
12:45 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 1
Game Details
Next
John Brewin profile picture Posted by John Brewin
Aug 4, 2014

Prem sets sail in search of riches

The ESPN FC crew preview Monday's ICC final matchup between Liverpool and Manchester United.

Before multi-channel TV and the Internet, preseason friendlies meant very little to English football fans. They were barely visible, their results collated desultorily in newspapers, perhaps reporting on the odd injury or a new signing making his bow.

- 50-50 Challenge: Liverpool vs. Manchester United

Now, even after a World Cup, football will not go away. Four days after Louis van Gaal had collected his medal for Netherlands' third place in Brazil, he was leading training at Manchester United's Carrington Training Complex. Good thing holidays are for wimps. He and his new players were soon burning under a California sun.

Unlike baseball's carefully planned spring training or the NFL's preseason schedule, clubs are haphazardly dotted around exotic locations. Their results can be weird and wonderful, without too much importance being placed on them. Few would plan to read too much into Chelsea losing 3-0 to Werder Bremen on Sunday, while Arsenal fans can draw comfort from their weekend defeat to Monaco given that, after their failure to win the Emirates Cup last year, they finally ended their long wait for a trophy of genuine worth.

Yet the Premier League's ever-growing hunger for commercial opportunities is beginning to place greater importance on these globetrotting trips. Manchester United and Real Madrid's journey to the University of Michigan's "Big House" became a major event, while United's Monday meeting in Miami with Liverpool will probably be even bigger.

When West Ham and Newcastle United are taking what insiders say was a "multimillion-pound" excursion to New Zealand, it becomes clear that preseason is now a key part of clubs' financial planning. In undertaking such a long trip -- the most recent English club to previously go Kiwi was Everton in 1987 -- both clubs may have endangered their preparations for the new season, but Hammers chairmen Davids Sullivan and Gold and Newcastle owner Mike Ashley obviously felt it worthwhile.

The Sun Life Stadium's Monday showdown between Liverpool and United -- a renewal of "the biggest game in the world," as Brendan Rodgers helpfully called it -- has taken on a competitive edge, a dream ticket for the organisers of the International Champions Cup, a tournament that has resembled a Euro Super League on tour. "Winning in preseason creates that belief and mentality, and so it's very important," Rodgers said.

"It's Manchester United v Liverpool," United's Darren Fletcher said after defeating Real in Ann Arbor, Michigan. "I know it's only preseason and it's just a summer competition, but when United play Liverpool, it's always a big deal."

The record crowd in Michigan on Saturday showed the growing appetite for the game in the United States.

United and Liverpool have participated in a timely American jamboree, its appeal augmented by the record U.S. audiences that enjoyed the World Cup. Such success will almost certainly see the competition's revival. Europe's elite have long toyed with the idea of an offseason tournament, which is probably why the idea of a Qatar Dream League seemed so plausible when London's Times newspaper was duped by a hoaxer last year. For United, exiled from European competition next season, their stateside jaunt has helped restore some relevance among their usual peers.

Such a fixture can only conjure memories of the Premier League PR disaster that was the "39th game," the ill-fated idea floated in 2008 that planned to take advantage of the global popularity of English football by playing an extra round of matches in cities across the globe. The idea of Wigan playing Middlesbrough in Kuala Lumpur appealed to the clubs' owners, but the outrage of domestic fans and the media saw the idea sink like a stone.

Foreign fans had a rather different view. ESPN's stories of the time carried many user comments from outside England expressing interest. Why should fans be denied the presence of their heroes? Six years on, the importance of such markets has hugely increased, with the proportion of TV rights a key indicator.

The Premier League, with clubs still interested, remained open to the idea until it was quietly abandoned in 2010. It would be little surprise if the concept was revived, though probably without the imbalance of adding an extra game to the regular season.

Instead, preseason might be "monetised," to use that dreaded term, to ensure those record TV revenues for the regular season are supplemented. Like those weary players doing shuttle runs at searingly hot high-altitude locations, the Premier League is ensuring its global appeal can be sweated.

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.