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MLS Preseason schedule in Tucson announced; Desert Diamond Cup K - KVOA | KVOA.com | Tucson, Arizona

MLS Preseason schedule in Tucson announced; Desert Diamond Cup Kicks Off Feb. 15th

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Photo: FC Tucson Photo: FC Tucson

As is the case every year, Major League Soccer teams and their thousands of fans will flock to Tucson for their spring training at the Kino Sports Complex. Pima County, FC Tucson and the Desert Diamond Cup have helped bring you these teams every season.

Here's a press release from FC Tucson on the 2017 MLS Schedule:

Pima County, Visit Tucson, and the town of Oro Valley are
proud to partner with FC Tucson and Major League Soccer to announce the details of 2017 MLS Preseason
in Tucson.


Preseason games will be divided into two periods. The first period, the Desert Friendlies, which will take
place from Friday, Jan. 27th, through Tuesday, Feb. 7th. The second period, the Desert Diamond Cup, kicks
off on Wednesday, Feb. 15th and concludes on Saturday, Feb. 25th.
The Desert Friendlies will include seven MLS clubs: Seattle Sounders FC, Portland Timbers, Sporting
Kansas City, San Jose Earthquakes, New England Revolution, Real Salt Lake, and a seventh team to be
announced.


Fans will get a taste of a Cascadia Cup clash during the friendlies when Seattle Sounders FC face off
against their rivals to the south, Portland Timbers, in a match that always features fantastic fan support.
The Desert Diamond Cup, the premier MLS preseason tournament, returns for its sixth year. This year’s
edition features the most MLS sides, and the most compelling slate of teams, in the event’s history.
Joining Sporting Kansas City and New England Revolution for the Cup are Houston Dynamo, New York Red
Bulls, Colorado Rapids, and New York City Football Club, who will be making their first appearance in
Tucson.


In its sixth year, FC Tucson, Visit Tucson, and Pima County are continuing their partnership with MLS as the
Western Hub of Preseason. The Desert Diamond Cup has come from humble beginnings, with Sporting
Kansas City and New York Red Bulls playing the first edition at Hi Corbett Field in 2011, but has since
turned into the primary destination for MLS sides during preseason.
This year’s lineup includes an exciting number of players that are household names in American soccer,
including Andrea Pirlo and David Villa (NYCFC), Tim Howard and Jermaine Jones (Colorado), Dom Dwyer
and Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City), Kyle Beckerman and Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake), Chris
Wondolowski and David Bingham (San Jose), Bradley Wright-Phillips and Sacha Klestjan (NYRB), and
many more.


Tucson soccer fans will also have the opportunity to welcome home several familiar faces during preseason.
Ricardo Velazco (RSL), Justin Bilyeu (NYRB), and Justen Glad (RSL) will all experience a homecoming of
sorts, with Velazco and Bilyeu having started their careers with FC Tucson, and Glad being a native
Tucsonan.


“This event is important to the community because it has brought groups together that are vital for the
success of Tucson as a city,” FC Tucson General Manager Jon Pearlman said. “Through private and public
partnership, great sponsors, the work of Pima County, the City of Tucson, Visit Tucson, and the Town of Oro
Valley, FC Tucson is proud to again be the MLS Western Hub of Preseason and bring the beautiful game
to Southern Arizona.”


Additionally, the Pima County Stadium District is happy to announce the overhaul of two lighted training
fields in the Kino South Sports Complex. Fields 11 and 12 will now boast a world-class surface to replicate
the conditions of the fields currently on the North side. These new fields make possible expansion of MLS
preseason and the Desert Diamond Cup and, more importantly, increase access to high quality soccer
pitches for youth and adult players in Tucson.


TICKET PACKAGE INFO: For more information, visit www.fctucson.com/tickets .
2017 Desert Diamond Cup (All kickoffs are Mountain Standard Time)
Saturday, Feb. 18th
New England Revolution vs. Colorado Rapids, 1:00 p.m.
New York Red Bulls vs. Sporting Kansas City, 3:30 p.m.
New York City Football Club vs. Houston Dynamo, 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 25th
5th place team vs. 6th place team, 1:00 p.m.
3rd place team vs. 4th place team, 3:30 p.m.
1st place team vs. 2nd place team, 6:00 p.m.

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