2020 Men's International Champions Cup cancelled due to coronavirus pandemic

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The 2020 International Champions Cup men’s tournament has been cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak, organisers Relevent Sports have announced.

With nearly every league in Europe currently on hiatus, many are expected to attempt to finish their seasons in the summer months if it is safe to return to the playing field. 

Already, planned summer competitions like Euro 2020, the Copa America and the Olympics have been postponed and now the ICC has joined that list. 

The ICC is a series of pre-season friendly matches that take place primarily in North America and Asia, and has featured some of the world's biggest teams since the tournament's inception in 2013.

According to the Los Angeles Times, this summer's tournament was set to feature Real Madrid taking on rivals Barcelona at brand-new SoFi Stadium, the NFL venue still under construction in the Los Angeles area.

A women's version of the ICC began in 2018, and Relevant said they were still planning on going ahead with that tournament.

“We are heartbroken for the thousands who have succumbed to the awful Covid-19 disease, and our thoughts are with everyone who’s been impacted during this difficult time,” Relevent Sports chief executive Danny Sillman said in a statement.

"The health and safety of players, staff, fans, and all who are involved in our matches is always paramount.

"The lack of clarity of when social distancing and shelter-in-place restrictions will be lifted and the uncertain international football calendar with the potential for European domestic leagues and UEFA tournaments being played into August, means planning a men’s International Champions Cup this summer is unfeasible. 

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"We look forward to bringing the best clubs and most iconic matchups in the world to the U.S. and Asia in 2021.”

With an expanded 24-team European Championship and a 12-team Copa America, the ICC had planned on a slimmed-down tournament this summer after featuring 12 teams in 2019.

“We want to make sure that whatever we put on is respectful to the clubs and respectful to the fans. It will be a smaller tournament for sure. We want to make sure that teams bring over their [big-name] players," Relevent Sports executive chairman Charlie Stillitano told SportBusiness in December.