Wednesday, July 27, the AT&T MLS All-Stars host Barclays EPL Champion Manchester United for the second consecutive year, and this summer at Red Bulls Arena in Harrison, New Jersey. New York Red Bulls coach Hans Backe will coach the MLS All-Stars, featuring Thierry Henry, David Beckham, Kyle Beckerman, Shalrie Joseph, Tim Ream and Omar Bravo.
Man U surprises Seattle with unfriendly 7-0 score
Manchester United, who roster Wayne Rooney, Javier Hernandez “Chicharito”, Michael Owen, Rio Ferdinand, Ji-Sung Park and Dimitar Berbatov, last week surprised Seattle Sounders with a 7-0 shut-out. That rather unfriendly result has not phased the MLS All-Stars, who are expecting a competitive game.
“[In Seattle] there was a first half, where I thought that Seattle was very competitive, and then a lot of changes in the second half which resulted in the scoreline,” said Alexi Lalas, ESPN commentor and former U.S. National Team defender and GM of the LA Galaxy, New York Red Bulls, and San Jose Earthquakes.
“With the All-Star game it’s going to be different because the collection of talent, not just one through 11, but one through 18, is much more quality. This All-Star team will give Manchester United a much better game for the full 90 minutes and it will be competitive and entertaining.”
The MLS All-Star game is a higher profile event this season, partly due to the growing sponsorship of AT&T. This season, All-Star game will be broadcast via ESPN International networks to over 39.3 million television home in 104 countries and territories across the world. Today, Thierry Henry and Michael Owen will light the Empire State Building’s tower lights with MLS (white/green/blue) and Manchester United (red) colors to promote the All-Star game.
“AT&T has been a huge partner to soccer and in particular, Major League Soccer,” said Lalas. “They’re looking at the All-Star game as an opportunity to draw their big guns at it and that’s wonderful. Whether it’s the ability for fans to vote for the All-Star game on twitter through AT&T, the lounge here in New York City they set up for fans here, or their actual sponsorship of the game itself, they’ve doubled-down in terms of their commitment because of the excitement this event is generating.
I know the importance of having sponsors who not only have the dollars but also have the vision. This is a partnership that continues to grow in terms of dollars and attitude and will continue to do so even after the All-Star game.”
MLS All-Stars vs. Manchester United: July 27 at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN 2, Galavision, and TSN.
FOLLOW US SOCCER EXAMINER AND LE EISENMENGER ON TWITTER AND SUBSCRIBE TO EMAIL ALERTS.