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Manchester City vs. Orlando Pirates Live at Stadium

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Manchester City will open the 2009 Vodacom Challenge campaign against Orlando Pirates at the Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane this Saturday (18/07/09). The game is to be shown live outside the City of Manchester Stadium at 2pm.

*UPDATE* - This game has been and gone but if you click here you can see footage from the day outside the stadium plus the gathering of fans for the Adebayor signing.

The Vodacom Challenge has gained in popularity locally over the past number of seasons, in part thanks to Premier League teams taking part. Spurs won the challenge in 2007 and Manchester United in 2009, United came second to Kaizer Chiefs in 2006.

This year Manchester City, Kaiser Chiefs and the Orlando Pirates take up the challenge. City’s first opponents were founded in 1937, the pirates have become ingrained in the culture of the country and boast over ten to twelve million fans. Their most successful era was during the 70’s dominating the National Professional Soccer League. They were crowned the Kings of Africa in 1995 when they won the then CAF Champions Cup.

Manchester City has announced that they will be taking a full strength squad to the Vodacom Challenge, including new signings Gareth Barry, Carlos Tevez and Roque Santa Cruz. Robinho and Elano will not be available until the final after they have been given extra rest after their recent Brazilian success.

Garry Cook has confirmed that the new kit will be worn in the game. Cook said of the tournament: "There is a great deal of excitement in Manchester about the Challenge and everybody is anticipating a great trip… The players have just completed a full week in Germany where they did a lot of fitness and stamina work and are now looking forward to playing some matches."

After the first game City will play the Kaizer Chiefs before the two African clubs play each other. The winner of the two African teams on the 23rd of July will play City in the final on Saturday 25th July.

The Manchester City new kit will be officially released on Saturday and will be on sale at the City of Manchester Stadium from 9am when the City Store opens for the new season. Saturday will be the second day of the “City Live” event and the match will be shown live on a big screen outside the ground opposite the East Stand, kick off 2pm. There will also be family entertainment and a BBQ. The match is also being shown on the mcfc website live.

With the new signings and anticipation surrounding the team Saturday could prove to be very atmospheric.

City Live: Man City vs. Orlando Pirates, 2pm, big screen, East Stand: Free
Click here to see mcfc article about the day

MANCHESTER CITY SQUAD FOR THE VODACOM CHALLENGE: Shay Given,Kasper Schmeichel, Pablo Zabaleta, Michael Johnson, Stephen Ireland, Valeri Bojinov Javier Garrido, Martin Petrov,Shaun Wright-Phillips, Wayne Bridge,Benjani Mwaruwari, Richard Dunne, Kelvin Etuhu, Craig Bellamy, Nigel de Jong, Felipe Caicedo, Ched Evans, Shaleum Logan, Vladimir Weiss, Ryan McGivern, Stuart Taylor, Roque Santa Cruz, Gareth Barry, Robinho (arriving a week later), Elano (arriving a week later), Micah Richards, Nedum Onuoha, Carlos Tevez


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