SUMMER FRIENDLY UPDATE: PORTSMOUTH ANNOUNCE NORTH AMERICAN TOUR

PORTSMOUTH FC to play Club America, FC Edmonton and DC United

Troubled English side Portsmouth FC is coming to the United States and Canada in July, joining an impressive list of English clubs prowling around North America in July. Manchester United, Manchester City, Bolton Wanderers, Tottenham Hotspur and Scottish giants Glasgow Celtic have already made plans to play multiple dates on this side of the Atlantic.

Portsmouth, who will be coming to the Americas for the first time since going to South America in 1951, will be playing against Mexican perennial power Club America on July 14 at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, then head north of the border to plat the an Edmonton FC Select XI on July 21 before shifting to the East Coast to meet DC United at RFK Stadium on July 24.

How can a club that is $196 million in debt spring for a North American jaunt?

“I can assure supporters it won’t be costing the club a penny. The Americans were keen to bring a UK team across, especially those with Premier League connections,” Portsmouth administrator Andrew Andronikou told The News.

“Having been in the top-flight for the last seven seasons and also two FA Cup finals, Portsmouth are a respected club and they are delighted to be welcoming us. There are some countries out there that would love to have Liverpool, Manchester United and Chelsea visit, but those sort of clubs will want big bucks.

“We are a more affordable option — but still have Premier League link.”

After a season that must go on record as one of the worst in the history 112 year history of Portsmouth FC, the newly relegated club is set to tour North America in preparation for the 2010-11 season in the Football League  Championship.

Portsmouth has gone almost $200 million into debt, they’ve gone into administration, had 12 points deducted from their 2009-10 season, were relegated, had to sell off their players, and lost their manager… all in one season. Oh, and against all the odds Pompey made it to the FA Cup Final.

The club will certainly be enjoying their summer break, a chance to take some time off to refocus and refinance.

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