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Glasgow Rangers withdrawing from U.S. tour

Scottish champion Glasgow Rangers, which had agreed to play D.C. United at RFK Stadium this summer and was in negotiations to face Old Firm rival Celtic at Boston's Fenway Park and Mexico's America in Dallas, told the BBC on Sunday that they are planning to withdraw from the U.S. tour.

United has been contacted by Rangers and expects to learn definitively Monday about the status of the July 24 match, a D.C. spokesman said.

The cancellation would create a second opening for the MLS club to play a friendly against an international opponent. Talks with English club Blackburn Rovers for a meeting in early August at RFK fell through. United is set to face AC Milan on May 26 and El Salvador's national team June 19 in Washington.

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By Steve Goff  |  May 9, 2010; 1:27 PM ET
Categories:  D.C. United , Scotland  | Tags: AC Milan, Blackburn Rovers, D.C. United, Fenway Park, Glasgow Rangers, Old Firm, RFK Stadium  
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Comments

Wonder if this is an "excuse" because of financial difficulties? Smith may not return as coach, 6 of there top players (including DMB) are out of contract this summer. They maybe Scotland's champs and Champ League bound, but the situation at Ibrox is dire!

Posted by: londonboy | May 9, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

I'd like to see Ocean City Barons come through again.

Posted by: OWNTF | May 9, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

This is a positve; now KP and co. can resume the priority business of booking friendlies. Lord knows the MLS thing isn't working out so well.

Posted by: lgm6986 | May 9, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Ocean City Barons? How about Richmond in Richmond? I'd actually pay a couple bucks to go to that. :)

Posted by: DadRyan | May 9, 2010 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Nacho Novo an DBM have now both publicly stated - No to Rangers next yer. So they probably would not have traveled to US this summer anyway

Posted by: londonboy | May 9, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

"But a row broke out when a Boston newspaper criticised the behaviour of Rangers fans away from Scotland." BBC linky link.

Is it any different from their behavior in Scotland?

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | May 9, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

...and *stay* out!

Posted by: EdTheRed | May 9, 2010 10:17 PM | Report abuse

Nacho Novo an DBM have now both publicly stated - No to Rangers next yer. So they probably would not have traveled to US this summer anyway

Posted by: londonboy | May 9, 2010 4:40 PM
---------------------------------------------------------

I disagree. I imagine his agent will be in touch with MLS soon. NYRB now hold the first allocation pick...

Posted by: fischy | May 10, 2010 12:39 AM | Report abuse

AC Milan had to play before an empty stadium today -- some kind of penalty, I guess, for fan behavior. Also, it's good practice for their visit to play DCU at RFK....

Posted by: fischy | May 10, 2010 12:43 AM | Report abuse

Maybe Man City will add a date to their U.S. tour and come down to DC. That would be quality!!

Posted by: cidcamp70 | May 10, 2010 7:34 AM | Report abuse

I would much rather see two top-flight European teams play each other, rather than see them play the United.

Posted by: BT23 | May 10, 2010 8:50 AM | Report abuse

zzzzzzzzzzzz

Posted by: alan19 | May 10, 2010 8:57 AM | Report abuse

Some of the other commentators raise good points here. Is there really a huge demand for DCU friendlies vs. foreign clubs? As opposed to having our front office spend time on strengthening our roster/finding an acceptable stadium?

If not, why does the DCU FO spend so much time trying to line up these matches? Not sure if it is money, as I doubt how many people are willing to pay to see a glorified exhibition. The DC soccer audience is a sophisticated one, and I doubt many will pay to see DCU vs. Rangers or DCU vs. Blackburn.

So why this odd obssession by Kevin Payne and company?

Posted by: jofij | May 10, 2010 9:52 AM | Report abuse

Some of the other commentators raise good points here. Is there really a huge demand for DCU friendlies vs. foreign clubs? As opposed to having our front office spend time on strengthening our roster/finding an acceptable stadium?

If not, why does the DCU FO spend so much time trying to line up these matches? Not sure if it is money, as I doubt how many people are willing to pay to see a glorified exhibition. The DC soccer audience is a sophisticated one, and I doubt many will pay to see DCU vs. Rangers or DCU vs. Blackburn.

So why this odd obssession by Kevin Payne and company?

Posted by: jofij | May 10, 2010 9:53 AM | Report abuse

So why this odd obssession by Kevin Payne and company?

Posted by: jofij

Money.

Posted by: Reignking | May 10, 2010 9:54 AM | Report abuse

"I doubt how many people are willing to pay to see a glorified exhibition. The DC soccer audience is a sophisticated one, and I doubt many will pay to see DCU vs. Rangers or DCU vs. Blackburn."

66,830 paid to see us play Real Madrid, and then three years late, 72,368 paid to see us play them again.

31,473 paid to see us play Chelsea; 15,223 paid to see us play Celtic; 14,028 paid to see us play Spurs.

The bigger the name, the bigger the draw, but most of those are pretty respectable numbers.

Posted by: janspoor | May 10, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Janspoor actually makes my point. Chelsea and Real Madrid are in one league. Rangers and Blackburn are more like the Celtic and Spurs. Is all the fuss and drama worth it to draw a crowd smaller than what DCU pulls in for a regular season MLS match?

Posted by: jofij | May 10, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

What fuss? What drama? Money is money. Those last two gates were slightly below our averages for those seasons (2006 and 2003 respectively), but while I can't readily find numbers, my memory is that we have generally done pretty well with our other EPL friendlies (we've played NUFC, Blackburn, Notts Forest, and I think we played Spurs at least once more here as well as the match we played over there).

When it comes right down to it, football is (a) entertainment and (b) a business: why would the front office *pass up* a chance to make money by entertaining people with us playing a top-flight foreign side?

Posted by: janspoor | May 10, 2010 3:04 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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