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Busch Stadium transforming for EPL match Thursday

11:53 AM, May 20, 2013   |    comments
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(KSDK Sports) -- Busch Stadium ground crews have begun the process of converting the baseball playing surface into a soccer field, in preparation for the Thursday's clash of two of the most storied English Premier League clubs - Manchester City and Chelsea.

The teams will meet on Thursday, May 23rd at Busch Stadium in St. Louis, Missouri; kickoff is set for 7:30 PM CST.

Chelsea is one of the most successful teams in England with four Premier League titles and seven FA Cups. The Blues also boast two UEFA Cup Winners Cups, one UEFA Super Cup and one UEFA Champions League title. In 2012 Chelsea, with the help of Spaniards Juan Mata and Fernando Torres, as well as English International and three-time Chelsea Player of the Year, Frank Lampard, became the first London club to win the Champions League.

"It's an excellent opportunity for the club to be able to return to America so quickly after the last tour," said Chelsea Chief Executive Ron Gourlay. "We will face the strongest opposition in Manchester City and I am sure we will provide a competitive and entertaining match in St Louis."

Informally known as "The Blues" or "The Citizens", Manchester City FC is an English Premier League side, founded in 1880 as St Mark's West Gorton. The Club currently holds the title of Premier League champions and has won 25 major trophies.

It counts the European Cup Winners' Cup, three League Championship titles, and five FA Cups amongst its honors. Under manager Roberto Mancini, the Club plays its domestic home fixtures at the Etihad Stadium, a spectacular 47,500 seat arena, which the Blues made their home following the successful Commonwealth Games in 2003. For more information, please visit www.mcfc.co.uk.

Chelsea Football Club is one of the most successful teams in England and are the current UEFA Champions League and FA Cup holders. In the last 10 years the club has won three Premier League titles, four FA Cups and two League Cups.

Chelsea FC also became the first London club to win the Champions League, beating Bayern Munich in the final last May. Formed in 1905 in west London the 'Blues' play at their historical ground, Stamford Bridge in front of 41,798 supporters.

This is the first professional, non-baseball sporting event hosted at the new Busch Stadium.

"We are honored to host this historic match," said Bill DeWitt III, President of the Cardinals. "This is a wonderful opportunity for St. Louisans to see some of the best soccer players in the world. We also look forward to showcasing the versatility of Busch Stadium as a multi-use sports venue."

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