Even when you can pick whoever you want out of all the football clubs in the world…Arsenal decides to play Bayern Munich. Again.
No warm balls. No shady conversations in the dark corridors of UEFA HQ. Nope, none of that. Just a quick call from Ivan Gazidis to the Allianz Arena, presumably with a ‘double or quits’ quip thrown in, and we’re off to China to play our German overlords.
Interestingly, the friendly match forms part of the International Champions Cup – a weird conglomeration of fixtures that takes place each summer across the globe. It’s mostly just a jumped up brand awareness exercise.
Our match with Bayern Munich will be played in Shanghai on Wednesday, July 19, 2017. Perhaps we can get the kick-off at ten minutes to the hour. Ho ho ho.
The inevitable defeat to Bayern will be followed by a friendly against Chelsea on Saturday, July 22 in Beijing’s Bird’s Nest Stadium. Remember, we’ll be in Sydney for a couple of games in mid-July too. Someone at the Emirates is racking up the Avios points.
A week later we’ll be back in more familiar territory as the Emirates Cup kicks-off. The club are yet to confirm who has been invited, but the way things are going you’d not bet against it being Bayern, Bayern Reserves and 11 Arjen Robben lookalikes.
It’s all a far cry from shuttle runs in the shadow of the Alps but then, who knows, maybe Arsene won’t be in charge this time?