The World Football Challenge brings some of the best teams from around the world to the United States for a series of games that mostly take place against teams from Major League Soccer. One of these games will come to Las Vegas Nevada taking with them Real Madrid. The La Liga champion Real Madrid will play against Juventus FC at Sam Boyd Stadium this August. This significant soccer game has been in the works for 25 years and now that it is set Justice Entertainment Group and COO Daren Libonati said he can’t think of a better matchup for the city’s introduction to the sport.
“We’re talking about the best of the world’s sport coming to the world’s playground,” Libonati said.
Last weekend, both teams won titles, with Real Madrid clinching its record 32nd trophy in La Liga, Spain’s premier league, and Juventus capturing its 28th title in Serie A, Italy’s top league. The teams are traditional powers in their respective countries and have met on the pitch 14 times dating back to 1962. Each team got seven wins showing a difficult fair fight.
The World Football Challenge not only plays in Nevada, as it had been announced that Seattle Sounders will host Chelsea FC and LA Galaxy will host Real Madrid.
Both teams are contractually obligated to bring their “A” players, barring injury, which includes Ronaldo, Kaka and Sergio Ramos for Madrid, and Andrea Pirlo and Alessandro Matri for “Juve.” Madrid won the Challenge last season behind Ronaldo’s event-leading four goals in three games.
US soccer fans are in for some sweet treat as this year’s Challenge schedule has a lot of good games. “We’ve got a really sexy matchup,” Libonati said.
Libonati had long been planning to take a game in Las Vegas. It began after he had set up a game between the Cosmos and either Chivas USA or Club America for February of this year, but in the months after the Manchester United game where Cosmos suffered a 6-0 loss last August, 2011, the Cosmos underwent front office changes, and in November 2011 the matchup was canceled. The Cosmos haven’t played a game since.
Depending on the success of this soccer game, the future could hold more significant matchups like this one or the possibility of starting an MLS franchise in Las Vegas down the road.
However, all of that depends on the success of this first game. Sam Boyd seats 36,800, which is much smaller than some of the venues that held these games last year. Real Madrid vs. the Galaxy drew 56,211 to the L.A. Coliseum, and the Chicago Fire brought 61,308 to Soldier Field for a game against Manchester United.
After some serious consideration, it was stated that the tickets won’t have trouble selling out. Tickets range from $68-$253, with separate VIP packages also available. The tickets are already available; sales began last May 10 at ticketcenter.com.
- Barcelona, Real Madrid Rivalry: Xavi Disrespects Jose Mourinho and Ronaldo (bleacherreport.com)
- Juventus to take on D.C. United, Real Madrid as part of 2012 WFC (soccerbyives.net)
- Real Madrid to take on Celtic in Philadelphia in latest WFC addition (soccerbyives.net)
- SPL: Celtic excited by ‘magnificent’ World Football Challenge match against Real Madrid in America (dailyrecord.co.uk)
- Ronaldo, Real Madrid Return To LFF (philadelphiaeagles.com)
- LA Galaxy to play Real Madrid as part of the World Football Challenge 2012 | HDC – August 2 (theoriginalwinger.com)
- Real Madrid ace Kaka asks Ronaldo about Brazil return (tribalfootball.com)
- I want to stay at Real – Ronaldo (bbc.co.uk)
- Germany Vs. Portugal, 2012 European Championship: Ronaldo To The Rescue? (sbnation.com)
- Pique: Balotelli can win you a match and Pirlo a tournament (goal.com)