June 7th, 2008
McDonald's Teams Up With Mexican National Soccer Team for 2008 U.S. Tour
McDonald’s(R) is preparing for another year of world class soccer action as sponsor of the Mexican National Soccer Team’s (MNT) five game U.S. Tour. The sponsorship includes the McDonald’s youth soccer clinics and Player Escort Program before each game. In 2004, McDonald’s began a sponsorship agreement with the MNT that culminates at World Cup in 2010.
“McDonald’s has been an active partner in the Hispanic community for many years,” said Cristina Vilella, director of marketing, McDonald’s USA. “We are committed to offering experiences and opportunities—like the soccer clinics—that encourage Hispanic youth to pursue their dreams and aspirations,” said Vilella.
The first matches were held in Seattle April 16th against China and in San Diego on June 4th against Argentina. The remaining games are in Chicago on June 8th against Peru, September 24th in Los Angeles, and November 12th in Phoenix, Arizona. Game opponents will be confirmed at a later date.
“We are thrilled that McDonald’s is continuing its longtime support of the Mexican National Team,” said Kathy Carter, executive vice president of Soccer United Marketing. “This renewal is another example of how McDonald’s continues to be an integral part of the soccer family, not only in North America, but worldwide.”
This year, McDonald’s has signed Missael Espinoza, former MNT star and World Cup player to lead the remaining youth soccer clinics at each of the U.S. tour stops where more than 500 children in total are expected to participate. The clinics provide kids with the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of playing on a professional field and training side-by-side with a professional soccer player. At the end of each clinic, 22 children in each participating city will be selected to return on game-day to serve as McDonald’s(R) Player Escorts. As player escorts, each child will escort a player onto the field and stand alongside them during the national anthem.
Since 2002, more than 3,000 children from throughout the world have been given the opportunity to be McDonald’s Player Escorts at prestigious international tournaments, including the 2002 FIFA World Cup Korea-Japan(TM), UEFA EURO 2004(TM) and the FIFA Confederations Cup 2005(TM). McDonald’s sent a total of 1,408 player escorts from around the world, including 18 from the United States, to the 2006 FIFA World Cup Germany(TM).