IT’S one of the biggest football matches Australia has ever seen – the world’s biggest football team, Manchester United will play a Foxtel A-League All Stars team at Stadium Australia on Saturday 20 July.
This will be Manchester United’s only match in Australia as newly appointed manager David Moyes takes the English champions around Asia.
Such is the demand for the Manchester United game, a Live Site will operate from 2pm outside Stadium Australia on Saturday, with those without a ticket able to join in football’s biggest celebration and watch the A-League season highlights from 2pm on big screens in Sydney Olympic Park and then the big one against Manchester United, streamed live from Channel 7.
Sydney Olympic Park is set to turn red on Saturday with more than 30 themed bars (including a monster bar half the size of a football field), cafes and eateries creating an atmosphere worthy of the world’s biggest football team.
Stadium Australia managing director Daryl Kerry is urging fans to take advantage of the fact the cost of public transport is included in match-day tickets and that direct trains and major event buses will run for the event.
“Fans are encouraged to leave the car at home, arrive early and soak up the atmosphere of a week in sport that we will all remember for a long time,” Mr Kerry said.
The Manchester United squad including superstars Ryan Giggs and Rio Ferdinand arrived in Sydney on Sunday ahead of their clash with the Foxtel A-League All Stars at Stadium Australia. In a massive boost for United, goalkeeper David De Gea and striker Robin van Persie joined the team in Sydney ahead of the big clash, having missed the first pre-season game due to extended leave following international commitments in June. Wayne Rooney was set to play but has since been ruled out due to injury.
Click here to view the full squad.
Ticket allocation for the Football Family exhausted in 30 minutes. Ticket allocation for the general public exhausted in two minutes. Corporate hospitality at Stadium Australia exhausted in three days. Ticket demand for Manchester United’s first game in Australia in 14 years has rivalled any sporting event in the country since the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
What Sydney FC fan or Melbourne Victory fan hasn’t wondered how their best stack up against the world’s best?
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The best way to secure your seat to the most anticipated sporting event in years is to renew your Stadium Australia membership or join as an Stadium Australia member.
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The Manchester United v Foxtel A-League All Stars blockbuster is another stunning result for Sydney sports fans.
It has been over a decade since United last visited Australia, when they played two friendlies against a combined Socceroos-Olyroos side in 1999.
This time the current English League champions come to Stadium Australia for a one-off match on the Australian leg of their Asian tour, as they prepare for the 2013/14 season.
Securing the Manchester United fixture is a massive coup for Stadium Australia, which in 2013 will roll out the biggest sporting event calendar since the Sydney Olympics.
“The Manchester United versus A-League All Stars game on Saturday 20 July is the final jewel in the crown of a magnificent event calendar for Stadium Australia and for Sydney,” said Stadium Australia managing director Daryl Kerry.
“It’s very exciting for Sydney, the Stadium and its members and corporate hospitality guests, and sports fans generally.”
The announcement comes on the back of Sydney winning the right to host two State of Origin games in 2013 and the third and potentially deciding rugby Test between the Wallabies and the British & Irish Lions. The Manchester United fixture also caps off the biggest year for Stadium Australia since the 2000 Olympics.
Manchester United are England’s most successful team: winning a record 20 league titles, a record 11 FA Cups, 4 League Cups, 3 European Champions League titles, a Cup Winners’ Cup and they were the first team to win the elusive treble – Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League – in 1998/99.
With an estimated worth of $2.23 billion, Manchester United tops Forbes’ list of the 50 most valuable sports brands – cementing their standing as the biggest, best and most valuable sports franchise on the planet.
Having signed Dutch striker Robin van Persie from London rivals Arsenal, he and Wayne Rooney are perhaps the world’s most formidable strike force.
In an incredible first season at Old Trafford, van Persie made it consecutive Golden Boot awards scoring 26 goals (including the club’s goal of the year and the Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year award) as he helped United claim an unprecedented 13th Premier League title and their 20th league title overall.
Manchester United have an estimated 659 million supporters worldwide and their Theatre of Dreams, Old Trafford, holds 75,765 fans who demand success and make a lot of noise.
Stadium Australia is set to raise the decibel level with extra seating being installed to cope with the enormity of the occasion, increasing capacity to 83,999 and creating a unique atmosphere worthy of the world’s biggest sporting team.