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Soccer at Fenway Park?

Reports surfaced this week that Glasgow rivals Celtic and Rangers were discussing a possible friendly in the Boston area this summer. Everyone assumed the match would be played at Gillette Stadium, home of the MLS's New England Revolution and site of numerous international games over the years.

Now I am getting word that, if the deal is finalized, historic Fenway Park might be the venue. The 98-year-old stadium is used almost exclusively for baseball, though it did host an NHL game between the Bruins and Philadelphia Flyers on New Year's Day. Rangers and Celtic are tentatively planning preseason trips to North America in late July, including Rangers against D.C. United at RFK Stadium.

Fenway would be available July 19-28 while the Red Sox are on a 10-day West Coast road trip.

Other potential matches and sites:

Rangers vs. Club America at Dallas Cowboys Stadium
Celtic at Toronto FC
Celtic vs. team to be determined in Philadelphia
Manchester United vs. MLS All-Stars in Houston
Manchester United at Philadelphia Union
(Man U has also committed to playing at Chivas Guadalajara)

We should learn soon whether some, or all, of these proposals come to fruition.


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By Steve Goff  |  April 21, 2010; 10:30 PM ET
Categories:  D.C. United , England , MLS , Scotland  | Tags: Boston Red Sox, Club America, Dallas Cowboys, Fenway Park, Gillette Stadium, Glasgow Celtic, Glasgow Rangers, Manchester United F.C., New England Revolution, Philadelphia Flyers, Philadelphia Union, Toronto FC, soccer  
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Next: Thursday kickaround

Comments

Celtic vs. Rangers at Fenway? The drinking/fighting factor has to be off the charts.

Posted by: whoshotsam | April 21, 2010 10:38 PM | Report abuse

Stupidest idea of all time.

Posted by: J_S_F | April 21, 2010 10:38 PM | Report abuse

Tickets would go in a second, but I'd love to get one. It sounds really cool -- once in a lifetime. My questions would be related to the field. Would it be like Wizards' Community America Park, where they run the pitch in a way that evades the mound? Or would they wreck the mound for this game? Those things take weeks to get right. I realize the stands aren't built for soccer views, but it would still be cool to be there. Plus, Mo Edu could show off the World Cup trophy.....

Posted by: fischy | April 21, 2010 10:54 PM | Report abuse

BTW -- Y'all know they used to play football there, right? And, according to Wikipedia, it would be the 2nd time Celtic played in Fenway. In 1931, they played a team called -- wait for it -- the New York Yankees, who were part of the American Soccer League. Celtic lost 4-3.

Posted by: fischy | April 21, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse

I'd love to go even though this one can get ugly in the stands and or parking lots.

Posted by: sire1 | April 21, 2010 11:25 PM | Report abuse

Hope Gringo Torres is alright from getting his nards hammered, OUCH!

Posted by: DadRyan | April 22, 2010 12:16 AM | Report abuse

Celtic, Rangers, alcohol, argy bargy, Fenway...yup, someone is definitely getting tossed over the Green Monster.

Posted by: Kosh2 | April 22, 2010 12:58 AM | Report abuse

we need to get MANU over here instead of Blackburn...

Posted by: TheWashDipsSince88 | April 22, 2010 8:25 AM | Report abuse

we need to get MANU over here instead of Blackburn...

Posted by: TheWashDipsSince88 | April 22, 2010 8:25 AM | Report abuse

------------------

I'm actually looking forward to the Blackburn game. We need to roll out the red carpet to welcome back Nellie...

Posted by: combedge | April 22, 2010 8:38 AM | Report abuse

How do they pronounce Rangers in Boston?

Ayn-guhs?

Posted by: Rand-al-Thor | April 22, 2010 9:12 AM | Report abuse

How do they pronounce Rangers in Boston?
Posted by: Rand-al-Thor

"Protestants"

Posted by: delantero | April 22, 2010 9:24 AM | Report abuse

Hmmm...I though Boston was Irish, not Scottish...

Posted by: jro1 | April 22, 2010 9:40 AM | Report abuse

We all know how well soccer plays on fields used for baseball. Great idea, Boston....not.

Posted by: DrBeaker | April 22, 2010 9:50 AM | Report abuse

jro1, I was scratching my head at that, too. But who knows anything about that leauge?

Posted by: Reignking | April 22, 2010 9:51 AM | Report abuse

I keep waiting for soccer to be played at RFK. Sure hasn't been any yet this season.

Not by the home team anyway.

Posted by: Ron16 | April 22, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

NYT reports the NY Cosmos is going to be revived as an MLS team

Posted by: Ruthie1 | April 22, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

NYT reports the NY Cosmos is going to be revived as an MLS team

Posted by: Ruthie1 | April 22, 2010 10:03 AM
----------------------------------------------------------------

So, this is how rumors get started.

The article isn't even about the Cosmos, and the paragraph about the revival of the Cosmos brand is perfunctory, containing no information that hasn't already been reported months ago. Most importantly, though, the article most definitely does not says the Cosmos will be revived as an MLS team.

Here's the story that actually ran on the subject last August:

http://goal.blogs.nytimes.com/tag/paul-kemsley/

The Cosmos brand was purchased last year by Kemsley, with the avowed purpose of creating some kind of "traveling array of all-stars, playing matches around the world." No doubt, that was a bit of a pretext, or prologue, to an eventual MLS bid. With Montreal preparing to announce their MLS expansion just before the AC Milan game, it does seem momentum is building to put the 20th team in New York City. It seems to me less likely that Kemsley will be the guy to get the franchise. He might just make a profit in selling the name rights.

Posted by: fischy | April 22, 2010 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Atlanta Chiefs might be the next MLS expansion team.

Posted by: Reignking | April 22, 2010 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Goff, I wrote about Fenway's plans regarding international soccer, specifically Fulham, last November. Google "Fenway Sports Group intends to connect Fulham FC with US markets" and continued at "Fulham Tries to Build on US Connection" on USSoccerPlayers.com.

Posted by: lisaoberon | April 22, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Bring back the Tulsa Roughnecks! Perfect geographic rival for the KC Wizards.

Posted by: combedge | April 22, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

More expansion? The quality in MLS can be measured by turnovers, and if anyone has noticed, they are uniquely numerous at every match.

Posted by: juke2 | April 22, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

Watched the NHL game on TV at Fenway...how the fans had any few from the filed level seats is questionable.

Posted by: juke2 | April 22, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

The NHL Winter Classic is one thing but is Fenway even large enough to fit a soccer field in?

Posted by: Gambrills4 | April 22, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

it is absolutely ridiculous that Rangers would play Club America in Dallas. Didnt CA play Chelsea there last year? Whats going on with that market? Same thing happened w/the Quakes last year with the Chivas vs. Barcelona game. I'm thinking the problem is with Wolff and Hunt, cause all other MLS teams get to showcase themselves against powerful foreign opponents. Maybe these two owners dont want to rent facilities. I dont think its Garber going over these two teams' head, cause having this friendly simply confirms the nearby MLS's team as irrelevant. Trust me, if its Barca vs Quakes the stadium still sells out. There should be no foreign vs foreign club friendly. It just doesnt help out MLS at all. How about other teams too? Why not spread some of the wealth to KC or Crew? How about KC vs Man City?

Posted by: alespar415 | April 22, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

I live near Boston and I'm certainly interested, especially since I'm a transit rider who can get there, unlike the Foxboro boonies. I wonder how the field will be oriented, since they probably want to affect the infield as little as possible. Bars everywhere, hmmm. One blogger I've read assumes the worst and says security costs will be huge.

Here a photo gallery of the hockey game between Boston University and Boston College, played one week after the Winter Classic. Check out BU's red jerseys.

http://www.insidehockey.com/columns/5542

Posted by: capeck | April 23, 2010 1:03 PM | Report abuse

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