Barcelona have announced their opponents for the traditional season opener, the Joan Gamper Trophy. The original plan was for both the Masculi and Femeni teams to play on the 6th of August as part of a double-header, but that plan has been discarded.
Xavi Hernandez’s team will face Mexican side Pumas on the 7th of August at 20:00 CEST at Camp Nou, while the Femeni side will play Montpellier HSC at 20:00 on the 23rd of August.
The club noted on their official website that it had become impossible to find a club with both a men’s and women’s team in order to play the trophy together at short notice following the withdrawal of AS Roma.
The Giallorossi withdrew from the match in order to better prepare for the game according to their statement, although it was rumoured this was due to pressure from the European Clubs Association and President Nasser Al-Khelaifi.
Milan were then mentioned as a candidate for the Gamper trophy but that too seemed to fall on deaf ears a little over a month before the original fixture.
No doubt the change of dates and plans will reflect poorly on the leadership at the club. With all respect to Pumas and Montpellier, they are unlikely to draw the same crowds as the likes of Juventus, Arsenal or Boca Juniors that have played in recent years.