Top teams being lured to the Cape

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United_Ajax Gallo Images Manchester United toured South Africa last year.

Cape Town – Capetonians could soon see their favourite European soccer stars playing at the Cape Town Stadium.

Grant Pascoe, mayoral committee member for tourism, events and marketing, left for London on Friday to meet football teams to encourage them to come to Cape Town in June or July.

On Friday Pascoe tweeted: “On my way to London to meet with four Premier division clubs and watching three games over the weekend.

“It is based on the same model used for last year’s match between Manchester United and Ajax Cape Town. This proved to be a major success,” Pascoe said.

He said that the names of the potential clubs would be released “if and when agreements are made”.

Last year, Manchester United took on the Urban Warriors and drew 1-1 at the Cape Town Stadium. Pascoe said an independent economic impact study showed that the match brought in R76 million into the economy.

“This was the direct impact based on the takings of accommodation, restaurants, shopping and ground transport. The indirect benefit was R107 million,” Pascoe said.

A study conducted by a tourism consultancy firm also found that international tourists, who came specifically for the game, spent around nine days in the city spending on average R800 daily.

“These current talks form part of the city’s efforts to brand Cape Town as a leading international sports destination. Cape Town Stadium, and the city, offer the ideal environment for training grounds, with the climate and world-class infrastructure as some of the key selling points,” Pascoe said.

Pascoe will return later this week with feedback on the outcome of his trip.

“Once a final decision is taken a public announcement will be made,” he said.

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