FRANKFURT, Germany, Nov. 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Two of the most esteemed clubs in the German Bundesliga are heading to the United States this winter to face off against teams from around the world in the 2016 Florida Cup. The tournament, which has expanded from four clubs in 2015 to nine in 2016, will take place in the Orlando and Fort Lauderdale area between Jan. 10 and 20.
Bayer 04 Leverkusen is competing in its second Florida Cup, while FC Schalke 04 is a newcomer to the tournament. Additional clubs participating include Brazil's Corinthians, Fluminense, Atlético Mineiro and Internacional; Ukraine's Shakhtar Donetsk; Colombia's Independiente Santa Fe; and the Fort Launderdale Strikers of the United States.
The clubs representing the Bundesliga in the tournament are two of the most storied in German soccer. Since their stunning UEFA Cup championship in 1997, Schalke has risen to one of the league's premier teams. With three German Cup titles (2001, 2002 and 2011), a German League Cup victory (2005) and a German Supercup championship (2011), Schalke's recent success provides excitement and optimism for one of the Bundesliga's most passionate and dedicated fan bases.
Led by newly acquired forward Javier 'Chicharito' Hernández, Bayer 04 Leverkusen is equipped with one of the most potent offenses in the Bundesliga. After a fourth place finish last season that resulted in qualifying for the UEFA Champions League, Leverkusen will heavily count on the dynamic forward as a key player during the 2015-16 campaign.
Leverkusen also has close American ties, as goalkeeper David Yelldell has spent time on the United States Men's National Soccer Team roster.
Listed below are the dates, times and opponents for Leverkusen and Schalke's Florida Cup matches. Both clubs will play two matches each during the tournament.
- Jan. 10 at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex (Orlando):
Bayer 04 Leverkusen vs. Independiente Santa Fe at 5:00 p.m. EST;
FC Schalke 04 vs. Fort Lauderdale Strikers at 7:30 p.m. EST
- Jan. 13 at Lockhart Stadium (Fort. Lauderdale):
FC Schalke 04 vs. Atlético Mineiro at 6:30 p.m. EST
- Jan. 13 at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex (Orlando):
Bayer 04 Leverkusen vs. Internacional at 8:30 p.m. EST
More information and tickets for the Florida Cup can be found at FloridaCup.com.
About the Bundesliga
One of Europe's top tier soccer leagues, the Bundesliga sits at the pinnacle of Germany's club soccer league system. With 18 member clubs and ranking first in the world in average match attendance, the Bundesliga attracts fans from around the world – with broadcast television access in over 200 countries. The league was formed in 1962 and is operated by the Deutsche Futball Liga (DFL). For more information on the Bundesliga visit Bundesliga.com