Over four nights from February 22 to March 3, four Major League Soccer teams – the Los Angeles Galaxy, the New York Red Bulls, the New England Revolution, and Real Salt Lake – will descend on Tucson to compete in a round-robin tournament hosted by the FC Tucson Desert Diamond Cup. Karp & Weiss is proud to support FC Tucson, Tucson's own United Soccer League Premier Development Team, and the Desert Diamond Cup.
The Desert Diamond Cup launches FC Tucson's effort to develop a “Cactus league” soccer spring training series for Major League Soccer based here in Tucson. In spring 2011, FC Tucson presented the first Desert Cup, an exhibition series between FC Tucson, the Phoenix-based Arizona Sahuaros, Sporting Kansas City, and the New York Red Bulls. With barely a few weeks' lead time, the Desert Cup drew more than 10,000 fans to Hi Corbett Field for an energetic weekend of professional soccer. Heading into this year's Desert Diamond Cup, the hosts expect more than 50,000 fans and visitors will flock to Tucson, embracing Tucson's newest “home team” and engineering momentum for soccer as a new economic and cultural engine for southern Arizona.
FC Tucson has currently invested more than $110,000 in converting the baseball diamonds at Kino Sports Complex into professional –level soccer fields. Sporting Kansas City and the San Jose Earthquakes are already in Tucson using Kino as a base for preseason training. The Desert Diamond Cup will be a chance for FC Tucson to prove to MLS that they can present a professional sporting experience, and that the wider region – comprised of southern Arizona and Sonora, Mexico – has the passionate fan base to support a spring training league based in Tucson. With the departure of Major League Baseball, the arrival of Major League Soccer presents a singular opportunity for Tucson to create its own sports – and economic – future.