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SBD/February 21, 2014/Events and Attractions
Liverpool FC, Other High-Profile European Clubs Confirm Summer Tournament In U.S.
Published February 21, 2014
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SELECTING THE SITE: Int’l summer soccer tournaments have become commonplace in both the U.S. and Asia over the last decade, as clubs have honed in on the concept of holding preseason camps in lucrative overseas markets in a bid to kill two birds with one stone. At this point, the question generally is not if the top clubs will travel for the preseason; it is which continent they will travel to. Last year, Liverpool journeyed to the Far East and Australia for its preseason tour, but club CCO Billy Hogan said that didn’t automatically mean the club would switch to America this year, and added that the financial boost of these tours is not the overriding concern. Hogan -- who announced the club's U.S. trip during a press conference in Charlotte while a simultaneous presser was held in N.Y. -- said, “There’s a bit of a myth that touring is a highly lucrative part of what we do; in reality, it’s a very small component of the overall commercial and revenue construct of the club. It frankly is more about how we bring the club out to different markets.” Still, Hogan acknowledged that while fans in Asia are generally regarded as more soccer crazy than the average American, the maturity of the sports market in the U.S. makes a trip to the States more financially alluring than Asia. He said, “Ticket sales are how you make your money on tour ... and particularly in Asia, where there’s a lot of developing areas in a lot of markets ... you can’t charge what you would in the States. So from our perspective, it’s a balance.”
AN ADDED BONUS: Hogan noted Liverpool FC's ownership consortium, Fenway Sports Group also owns Roush Fenway Racing, which is based out of nearby Concord, N.C. Hogan said that, schedules permitting, FSG will likely try to bring out some of RFR’s drivers and staff to the game, alongside other stakeholders.