INTERNATIONAL football will be returning to East Anglia in the New Year.
The Arnold Clark Cup will see four of the world’s top 10 women’s teams clash this February, with Canada, joining England, Germany and Spain in the inaugural tournament.
Each team will play a round-robin match in Middlesbrough, Norwich, and Wolverhampton, giving fans across England the opportunity to see many of the world’s top footballers.
England begin their tournament on February 17th at Riverside Stadium against reigning Olympic champions, Canada, before taking on a star-studded Spain three days later at Carrow Road. The home side’s final fixture will be world number three Germany at Molineux on February 23rd.
England forward and 2021 Ballon d’Or nominee, Fran Kirby, acknowledged that with the quality of the teams, the tournament would be hotly contested.
“As a team, you want to test yourself against the best in the world and win trophies. That’s our clear goal for the tournament.” said Kirby.
“We’re buzzing to take on three of the world’s best sides at home. Canada are reigning Olympic Champions, Spain have some outstanding players in their squad, and obviously it doesn’t get much bigger an occasion than England v Germany.
“It’s a special opportunity to play world-class opposition in front of our supporters, so we’ll be determined to be firing on all cylinders.”
With over half of the tickets priced at £10 or less and the opportunity to see competitive, elite football at its very best, tournament organisers are expecting bumper crowds at each of the venues. Tickets are now available to purchase via www.arnoldclarkcup.com.
One of the sides looking to spoil England’s ambitions is Spain, who boast an unmatched four 2021 Ballon d’Or nominations, including the winner, Alexia Putellas.
Spain Coach, Jorge Vilda, said it was a challenge his side would be up for.
"For Spain it is a great honour to participate in the first edition of the Arnold Clark Cup alongside world-class teams such as England, Germany and Canada,” said Vilda.
“In addition, visiting England in the year of the EURO will give us the opportunity to betterprepare our participation in the tournament. We are very much looking forward to playing in England in February and hope to see a great show in all of the matches."
Throwing their support behind the tournament is United Kingdom’s largest independently owned family-run car retailer, Arnold Clark, who have agreed to a multi-year title partnership.
Eddie Hawthorne, Arnold Clark Chief Executive and Group Managing Director, said: “We’re delighted to launch the inaugural Arnold Clark Cup, and it’s been a real pleasure to work with Pitch International on this project. It’s a bold and exciting event and we believe that this will become a highlight of the sporting calendar for years to come.
“Football is something that brings the whole community together. We’re delighted to give fans the opportunity to see these great international players and inspire future stars live in their hometowns for a great price.”
England fans will be able to watch every match live on ITV, and can follow tournament updates at: @arnoldclarkcup / #arnoldclarkcup
To buy tickets to the matches at Carrow Road in Norwich click on the relevant button below.
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