Despite not being awarded matches in the International Champions Cup or the Gold Cup this summer, South Florida is still proving to be a destination of choice for the world’s biggest clubs. Barcelona and Napoli have just come to an agreement to play a friendly at Hard Rock Stadium. Just up the road in Boca Raton, the most expansive series of matches will be contested between Latin American heavyweights in Copa Gigantes. Nacional (Uruguay), Peñarol (Uruguay), Millonarios FC (Colombia), América de Cali (Colombia), Pachuca (Mexico) and DIM (Colombia) are all showcasing at Florida Atlantic University.
Most of the entrants to Copa Gigantes are no strangers to the South Florida area. Peñarol was in Miami just a few short months ago to take on Miami United. America de Cali took on River Plate (Argentina) at Lockhart Stadium in a summer friendly in 2016. The other Colombian club in this tournament DIM last took the field in South Florida in a series of friendlies at FIU Stadium in 2016 against Atletico Nacional and Deportivo Cali. Despite not being in the tournament, River Plate is a common foe for most of these clubs.
— Matias Wodner, First of His Name (@matiwod) July 14, 2018
In July 2018, Millionarios came up short against River Plate at the same site of this very tournament. For Pachuca and Nacional, their first trip to South Florida will have them clash against sturdy opposition. It’s without surprise that two of the three Colombian clubs made the playoffs with DIM falling just two points short in the 2019 Apertura. Similarly, Peñarol topped the Uruguayan Apertura and Nacional came in third.
Pachuca find themselves as underdogs of sorts given the standing of the other clubs in their respective leagues. Pachuca failed to qualify for the Liguilla (playoffs) in the Liga MX Apertura in 2018. During the 2019 Clasura, Pachuca earned a spot in the playoffs but would be eliminated in the first round by eventual champions Tigres.
Copa Gigantes will kickoff with the “Fiesta de Futbol” on June 30th from FAU stadium. Up first on Sunday, Pachuca will take on America de Cali at 5PM. Immediately after, Peñarol will take on DIM with kickoff slated for 8PM.
The Copa de Gigantes de America will get underway with two matches on the 4th of July holiday with Peñarol taking on Millionarios at 3:15PM. and Nacional taking on America de Cali at 8:15PM in a battle of Uruguay versus Colombia.
During the final night of matches, the fixtures will be rotated for domestic clashes. Nacional and Penarol will lead the festivities at 5:15PM followed by America de Cali taking on Millonarios at 9:30PM.
Tickets to the matches start at just $30. Watch your favorite South American clubs up close as they get ready for their Clasura, Copa Liberatdores, and Copa Sudamericana.