International Champions Cup dates set; more high-level summer soccer in the States

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Can we be excited about the next roster of fine teams coming through for the Guinness International Champions Cup and have a little go at the tournament, too?

Of course we can!

More details are out today on the second edition of this tournament. And there are some great names, including Manchester United, Manchester City, Real Madrid and Liverpool.

Roma, Inter Milan and AC Milan from Italy, plus Greece’s Olympiakos round out this little slice of summer soccer awesome. It plays out over 13 U.S. cities from July 26 to Aug. 4.

The quibble is here:

Today’s release (linked above) from Fox Soccer, the tournament’s broadcast partner, calls it a “fiercely contested eight team soccer extravaganza.”

This is a terrific event, one that allows domestic fans to get up-close looks at some of the world’s top stars. But it is what it is: exhibition soccer. (Which, by the way, will not include some of the real A-listers, as they’ll be on break following World Cup play … but details, details.)

But “fiercely contested?” Come on!

Priorities here for these clubs, roughly in this order, are: Don’t get hurt. Make money. Don’t get hurt. Make lots of money. Get some touches and generate some fitness for the coming season. Experiment with lineups and combos. Don’t get hurt. Shop. Don’t get hurt.

The final (between group winners) is at Sun Life Stadium, Miami, Florida.

 Group A

  • Real Madrid
  • Inter Milan
  • Manchester United
  • AS Roma

Group B:

  • Olympiacos
  • Manchester City
  • AC Milan
  • Liverpool

 SCHEDULE

July 24: Olympiacos v. AC Milan, site TBD

July 26: Real Madrid CF vs. Inter Milan at University of Phoenix Stadium, Phoenix

July 26: Manchester United vs. AS Roma, Sports Authority Field at Mile High, Denver

July 27: AC Milan v. Manchester City, Heinz Field, Pittsburgh

July 27: Liverpool FC vs. Olympiacos, Soldier Field, Chicago

July 29: Manchester United vs. Inter Milan, FedEx Field, Washington D.C.

July 29: Real Madrid CF vs. AS Roma,  Cotton Bowl, Dallas

July 30: Manchester City vs. Liverpool FC, Yankee Stadium, New York

Aug. 2: Inter Milan vs. AS Roma, Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia

Aug. 2: Real Madrid CF vs. Manchester United – TBD

Aug. 2: Olympiacos vs. Manchester City, TCF Bank Stadium, Minneapolis

Aug. 2: AC Milan vs. Liverpool FC, Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte