Lions and Impact among first to commit to the February soccer event at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex; Additional teams expected to be announced soon
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (Dec. 4, 2013) — Major League Soccer’s Montreal Impact and local favorite Orlando City Soccer Club will compete in the Walt Disney World Pro Soccer Classic at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex this spring. Additional teams will be announced in the next several weeks.
Montreal, which returns for its third straight appearance in the tournament (Feb. 19 – Mar. 1), is back to defend the Disney Pro Soccer Classic title it won over the Columbus Crew a year ago when it blazed through the event undefeated. Montreal is led by Marco Di Vaio, who was third in the league in goals scored last year with 20.
In just three USL-Pro seasons, the Orlando City Lions have won two regular-season titles and two postseason championships, including last year’s championship. This will be the club’s fourth straight appearance in the Disney Pro Soccer Classic, which will sort of be home games for the Lions because they will play their final USL-Pro season home games at ESPN Wide World of Sports this spring before joining the MLS in 2015.
“We are delighted to once again be competing in the Disney Pro Soccer Classic,” said Phil Rawlins, president of Orlando City Soccer Club. “Over the past three years, the Disney Pro Soccer Classic has proved invaluable in giving us game time against the very best teams in North America and preparing our players for the season ahead.”
“We’re excited to have two marquee teams to be among the first to participate in the Pro Soccer Classic. We fully expect this to be the best field in the Pro Soccer Classic’s history. This tournament further shows we are committed to the sport of soccer and now recognized as one of the top training and competition facilities in the world,” said Mike Millay, Director of Sports Development at ESPN Wide World of Sports.
Entering its fifth year, the Disney Pro Soccer Classic is designed to boost interest in soccer throughout Central Florida and establish the area as a prime training and competition destination for pro soccer clubs. Last year, the event at Disney attracted fans from across the U.S. and Canada and gave them a unique opportunity for an intimate fan experience at a world-class facility.
The tournament is just one of more than a dozen popular soccer events held annually at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, which is the leading multi-sports venue in the nation and the official preseason training home of the AS Roma soccer club.
For more information on the Disney Pro Soccer Classic, visit http://espnwwos.disney.go.com. Travel packages are available through GetTravel.com. The packages may include accommodations near Walt Disney World Resort, game tickets, ground transportation, and discounted Disney theme park tickets.