What: Argentina and Colombia will battle in East Rutherford, N.J., on Sept. 11 as part of a series of international soccer matches in the U.S. this summer into the fall.
Why it matters: These events can follow on the heels of the excitement of World Cup competition, albeit seven or more time zones away and without the U.S. represented, and successful United 2026 bid to boost the sport for fans and marketers here moving forward.
Argentina (@afa) and Colombia (@FCFSeleccionCol) are on through their respective Groups to the knockout phase at 2018 FIFA World Cup, who along with Mexico, Uruguay and Brazil leave five Latin American teams still alive in the hunt for the trophy. And while they have bigger things on their collective minds right now, the squads will also compete in a match on September 11 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., which while it won’t have the same stakes on the field, will have an important role in keeping the sport top of mind, particularly among the fervent Hispanic fan base in the region.
“We’re delighted to partner with Relevent and look forward to hosting this match,” said Henry Cárdenas, President of CMN Sports, in a statement. “Argentina is a powerhouse, loaded with impressive talent, while Colombia has shown enormous potential during this World Cup. We hope fans will enjoy this South American rivalry in a post-World Cup celebration.”
Along with the International Champions Cup (July 20-August 12) , which will feature the top international club teams numerous U.S. cities with large Latino populations like New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Miami and more, international soccer will maintain a strong presence in the U.S. with friendlies featuring Colombia vs. Venezuela in Miami and Argentina vs. Guatemala in Los Angeles, both on Sept. 7.
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“Relevent is committed to bringing the incredible culture and enthusiasm of international soccer to the U.S. and this match is sure to deliver that excitement to new and established fans alike,” said Charlie Stillitano, Co-Founder and Executive Chairman of Relevent.
The success of events like these will go a long way in determining how much the World Cup, minus the U.S., Canada and traditional favorite Italy, will have boosted interest in the sport here. The successful United 2026 World Cup bid “won the press conference,” but it will take a sustained effort to keep the momentum rolling to benefit MLS, the U.S. National Team and World Cup preparation for fans and marketers alike.
Cover Image: credit: Oleg Bkhambri (Voltmetro)