International Soccer Kicks Off Sunday In Charlotte
International soccer fans will fill Charlotte's Bank of America Stadium Sunday as England's Liverpool faces off against Germany's Borussia Dortmund.
The match is part of the International Champions Cup, which comes to Charlotte for the third time in four years.
Previously, Charlotte participated in the ICC tournament in 2014, 2015, and 2016.
This year is also Liverpool's second appearance in the Queen City. Previously, the team played Bank of America Stadium in a 2014 match-up against Italy's AC Milan, (and won 2-0).
Information on ticket sales for this weekend's game was unavailable Saturday afternoon, but past years have drawn between 54,000 and 69,000 fans to the uptown stadium, with many more fans filling up bars and restaurants around the city.
Reports compiled by the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority found the 2014 and 2015 ICC games generated around $17-18 million dollars in economic impact for the city.
Sunday's match should prove particularly interesting for soccer fans given that the current manager for Liverpool, Jurgen Klopp, is also the former manager for Dortmund. He switched teams in 2015, and on Sunday he'll once again find himself facing his former team from the opposite side of the field.
Could that give Liverpool an edge, given that Klopp presumably knows the strengths and weakness of his former club? Perhaps, but don't think too much of it, says John Arne Riise, a former player for Liverpool.
"Mr. Klopp knows Dortmund as a club, but every club has new players every season, so I don't think he knows all of the players there."
Rather, Riise is glad the teams can fill stadiums all over the world, including in the U.S. and here in Charlotte.
"Some people don't have the opportunity to go to the U.K. and see the games and meet the players, so I think it's great that the teams fly out and meet the fans," he said, "It's nice to go and meet the fans and give something back to them because they supported myself and the team for many years."
Kickoff for Sunday's game at Charlotte's Bank of America stadium is at 4 p.m.