Newcastle Announce Orlando City Game – A Third Division Side?

Newcastle announced their third and last pre-season fixture in the United States, as they play Orlando City on Saturday, July 23.

That seems an excellent location for the Magpies, because it will mean that some Newcastle fans, who may just be on holiday at DisneyWorld at the time, may be able slip away for the game – with the emphasis on maybe. 😀

But Orlando City are not an MLS side, and were founded only last year on October 25th, and play in the American Division of the newly formed USL Professional Division, which is the third division of American Soccer, so why couldn’t they get a third MLS side.

The Carolina Railhawks, which is based in Cary (just outside of Raleigh), is a football (soccer) side who play in the second division of  US soccer, the North American Soccer League (NASL), and kick of their season this coming Saturday.

So it seems a strange choice of team, but maybe it’s to help them out, as they are just getting started, and Orlando City have expressed their goal of being an MLS side within three to five years.

And the Newcastle club have announced they will spend a couple of days training in Florida before taking on the Lions. Thye had better watch the sun at that time becasue it’s usually 95 degrees F and 95% humidity, having lived in Boca Raton, South Florida for 7 years in the 1980s.

The match completes the schedule of games for the lads, and it looks a decent tour with two games in the mid-west with Sporting Kansas City on Wednesday, July 20, and Columbus Crew on Tuesday, July 26.

It’s just a pity the club couldn’t have had a game on the West coast, like the LA Galaxy,  for all the fans out there, but that’s not meant as a complaint.

13 comments so far

  • G

    Apr 7, 2011 at 9:50 AM

    Comment #1

    Presumably a confidence builder? Could be this years Leyton Orient though?

  • Alinufc

    Apr 7, 2011 at 9:51 AM

    Comment #2

    ould it be so that youth can get a couple of games in?

  • Davies

    Apr 7, 2011 at 9:54 AM

    Comment #3

    There’s really nothing unusual about playing lower league teams in pre-season. Clubs have done it since long before the Premier League. I remember seeing Arsenal and QPR playing GFA (Gibraltar Football Association) in the 80s and I have no idea what backwater league they played in. Maybe JP will know.

    These will all be good games. I really hope Barton can get his visa sorted.

  • The Power Ranger

    Apr 7, 2011 at 9:56 AM

    Comment #4

    Barton “I will sign a new contract if Kevin Nolan does”.

  • toonarmy1986

    Apr 7, 2011 at 10:09 AM

    Comment #5

    This tour is going be great for commercial revenue and a great move from Ashley and Co not that anyone will give him credit. If we can have half the impact that Man Utd get when they go over then it could be a great pay day and bring us 1000s of new fans in America.


    Apr 7, 2011 at 10:14 AM

    Comment #6

    Blatently they want to end the tour with a Newcastle ‘training’ trip to disney land

  • G

    Apr 7, 2011 at 10:14 AM

    Comment #7

    We already have Ed & Sgt Hegerty over there, presumably spreading the word already?

  • roshan MAGPIE

    Apr 7, 2011 at 10:24 AM

    Comment #8

    NUFC should have played against new work red bulls or la galaxy rather than a 3rd division american league club it sucks wat is the use

  • geoff777

    Apr 7, 2011 at 10:41 AM

    Comment #10


    Gibraltar FA is the Nation level Football Association

    They recently beat the Faroe Islands but their entry into UEFA has been blocked by Spain.
    Spain plays silly political games with Gibraltar all the time.
    Scandalous that Spain gets away with this constant bullying.

    Gibraltar is one of the earliest founded FA’s.
    Please support Gibraltar in their UEFA bid and indeed support them politically in their struggle to remain British.

  • pittsburgh_toon

    Apr 7, 2011 at 2:15 PM

    Comment #11

    A few things to help you all out. I am a TOON fan, born and bred in Pittsburgh, PA. I follow our local club who also plays in the “third division”. At this point, our pyramid is a mess and the 2nd division is just a very small league with 8 teams that will be defunct next season. The 3rd division (USLPro) now is really the best division under MLS in terms of talent and club stability. Orlando is a club that moved from Austin, Texas last season, where they finished 2nd overall in a decent 2nd division. They’ve got the 2nd highest payroll of any USLPro club and a roster loaded with MLS players and CONCACAF internationals. So, they may not be an MLS side, but the club is much more talented than say Columbus for example. Our league structure over here w/o promotion and relegation masks which clubs are actually deserving of competing in the top division. Another consideration is that most MLS clubs will only field reserve players for a meaningless friendly in the middle of the season. A USLPro club who is trying to market themselves to MLS is going to put out a strong lineup and go for a win. So the competition will be a nice test for Newcastle. Btw, I will be at the Columbus game cheering on the lads.

  • Mohamed

    Apr 7, 2011 at 4:32 PM

    Comment #12

    No complains as long as they’ll be coming to Ohio :d

  • toonarmyyank

    Apr 8, 2011 at 5:54 AM

    Comment #13

    Orlando City plays some of its games in the Orange Bowl. I’m sure the ability to sell 70,000+ tickets played into it.


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