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Real escape with hope of progress

What the papers say
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By ESPN Staff

Sydney FC to play Sagan Tosu in Japan

Sydney FC and their Italian sensation Alessandro Del Piero will travel to Tosu City, Japan and play J-League side Sagan Tosu in a friendly on July 24.

The Sky Blues are scheduled to depart for the pre-season fixture on July 22, making it logistically possible for Del Piero to compete in the A-League All Stars match against Manchester United on July 20.

Whether his 38-year-old body is up to the rigours of two matches in five days - sandwiched in between an 8000km flight - remains unclear.

The World Cup winner has featured prominently in promotions for the one-off All Stars clash, but there is speculation he will miss the game due to the Sky Blues' trip to Japan.

As expected, Del Piero was the striker who attracted the most fan votes for the All Stars team.

Football Federation Australia are yet to confirm his appearance, but A-League chief Damien de Bohun is on record as saying Del Piero would "love to be involved".

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