Four German clubs will tour the United States in the upcoming weeks. Bundesliga champion contenders FC Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund will arrive in July, while Hertha Berlin and FC St. Pauli will play friendlies in the U.S. later this month. These visits give Bundesliga fans in North America the opportunity to see their favorite players up close without the expense of crossing the Atlantic.
German clubs have made a real effort over the last half dozen years to build their brands in North America. Eintracht Frankfurt trained and played friendlies in Florida earlier this year and have been constant visitors to the US the last few seasons, while FC Schalke, Bayer 04 Leverkusen, 1.FC Koln, 1.FSV Mainz 05 and VfL Wolfsburg have also invested in training and touring the U.S. in recent years. With no World Cup or European tournament this summer, most of the star players of the four clubs visiting the next few months should be available. While these will be friendlies that lack the level of intensity of league and Cup matches during the season, it is fun to see the players that you watch on weekends up close. And I strongly suggest checking each club’s websites as the game dates approach to see if there will be opportunities to see the clubs during practice and training….you’ll get a feel for the player’s personalities and and athleticism while generally they make themselves available for autographs and selfies.
FC Bayern Munich
The German rekordmeisters look likely to grab the Bundesliga title once again with two league matches remaining, and will play for yet another DFB Pokal trophy when they face RB Leipzig May 25 in Berlin. In July they embark on another visit to the U.S. and will play three matches on their FC Audi Tour. On July 17 they will play Arsenal in Los Angeles at Dignity Health Sports Park, followed by a July 20 date in Houston versus Real Madrid at NRG Stadium. The Bavarian masters will finish their tour in Kansas City at Arrowhead Stadium on July 23 when they face AC Milan. For more information on Bayern’s visit and ticket availability check the Bayern US website.
Bayern have been pioneers in establishing a base in the United States — they were the first European club to open an office in the United States back in 2014. Their successful efforts to create and develop Bayern Munich fan clubs across North America as well as their repeated touring set the bar for other German, and indeed, European clubs to grow their brand overseas. An affiliation with MLS side FC Dallas and the high-profile signing of young North American talents such as Canadian Alphonso Davies and American Chris Richards further demonstrate the progress of Bayern’s efforts on this side of the Atlantic.
Although Borussia Dortmund look to fall just short of a Bundesliga title, it’s still been a successful season for an exciting schwarzgelbe side reinvigorated by veteran Bundesliga manager Lucien Favre. Dortmund, following up on their inaugural tour of the US last summer, will this trip travel to Seattle for a July 17 date with the Seattle Sounders, and will then travel to South Bend, Indiana for an enticing tilt with FC Liverpool, headed by the charismatic Dortmund coach Jurgen Klopp. The friendly will be played on the campus of the University of Notre Dame, an iconic location for the meeting of two legendary clubs. Given the popularity of BVB in America, it’s worth noting that the club plans to do summer tours in Asia during the following two summers, so this may be the only chances to see Dortmund in the US for awhile.
Hertha Berlin BSC
The Old Lady of Berlin will finish their Bundesliga season against Bayer Leverkusen on May 18 and then will head to the US for a season ending tour. Their first date will be at the new Allianz Field in St. Paul, Minnesota against Minnesota United on May 22. They will follow up by travelling to Madison WI for a tilt with USL League One side Forward Madison on May 24 at Breese Stevens Field. These two friendlies will constitute a rare opportunity to see Germany’s capitol city club. Ticket information can be found on the Minnesota United website and at the Forward Madison site. It will be an exciting visit for BSC and fans of the two American sides, with the Loons having a brand new stadium and Forward Madison in its inaugural season of USL competition. #hahohe
FC St. Pauli
St. Pauli returns to the US again following their 2018 season. This year, the popular Kult club will be playing the NY Cosmos on May 23 at Commisso Stadium at Columbia University and FC Buffalo on May 25 at Ali H Stadium. This being St. Pauli, there will also be a rock concert celebration at Brooklyn’s Knitting Factory on May 22 and a daylong celebration of soccer and the new bond between the Boys in Brown and the NPSL side sandwiching the afternoon kickoff at the FC Buffalo match. St. Pauli are popular around the world for their commitment to human values and their rockin’ sensibility, and have made quite an impression in the States, especially considering that they’ve spent most of the last years competing in Germany’s 2nd division.
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