Chelsea, Inter Milan to join Bayern Munich for ICC tournament in S’pore
SINGAPORE — They have set this season’s English Premier League (EPL) alight with their swashbuckling, attacking displays, and are on course to win their sixth league title. And, come July, football fans in Singapore will get to see Chelsea stars such as Eden Hazard and Diego Costa strut their stuff up close.
SINGAPORE — They have set this season’s English Premier League (EPL) alight with their swashbuckling, attacking displays, and are on course to win their sixth league title.
And, come July, football fans in Singapore will get to see Chelsea stars such as Eden Hazard and Diego Costa strut their stuff up close.
Industry sources have told TODAY that the English club will take part in the International Champions Cup (ICC), along with Italian giants Inter Milan.
Chelsea have already sealed the deal to play in the tournament, which will be held here for the first time, while TODAY understands that the organisers have already reached an agreement with Inter and are just sorting out a few final details.
TODAY reported last month that German champions Bayern Munich have already been pencilled in for the tournament, which will be held at the 55,000-seater National Stadium.
Sports marketing agency Catalyst Media Group Ltd is expected to make an official announcement on the three teams’ participation in the ICC next week.
Chelsea’s participation will mark the first time the Stamford Bridge outfit will play a friendly match here.
The Blues, who are helmed by Italian manager Antonio Conte, are already due to fly to Asia during their pre-season, having previously confirmed that they will take on Premier League rivals Arsenal in Beijing on July 22.
The news has thrilled Chelsea fans in Singapore, who have been waiting for years to see their favourite team in the flesh here.
Businessman Steven Chia, a Chelsea supporter for 35 years, said: “It is fantastic timing for Chelsea to come down this year, because it looks likely that they will be here as EPL champions.
“The team is playing well now and, with the quality of players we have, I’m sure they’ll put on a good display at the ICC — even though it’s considered a pre-season tournament.
“I’m also looking forward to all the possible fan meet-and-greet opportunities that will come along with them being here.”
Agreeing, 27-year-old Gary Chua, a fan since 1999, added: “I have watched them play in London, Malaysia and Bangkok, but all these trips resulted in a hole in my pocket.
“With them coming to Singapore, my wallet won’t be taking so much damage this time around.”
Since 2013, the ICC has seen top teams from the English, Spanish and Italian leagues competing in host cities worldwide.
Last year’s edition was played in 19 host cities across seven countries and drew participation from marquee clubs such as Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool, Real Madrid and Barcelona.
It also attracted close to 800,000 spectators and 70 million global television viewers.
The ICC will also be the biggest football tournament Singapore has hosted after the Barclays Asia Trophy in 2015, which featured English sides Arsenal, Everton and Stoke City, and a Singapore Selection.
In 2014, the National Stadium also hosted a match between Italian champions Juventus and a Singapore Selection, as well as an international friendly between Brazil and Japan.
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