updated 6/13/2011 8:16:57 AM ET 2011-06-13T12:16:57

CHICAGO, June 13, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- As yet another sign that soccer is solidifying its presence in the American sports landscape, this summer's international friendly between Manchester United and FC Barcelona is setting industry sales records on the US market. Vivid Seats, one of the country's leading secondary ticket marketplaces, has reported that the Manchester United vs. FC Barcelona match (scheduled for July 30, 2011 at FedEx Field) set a new record for the most tickets sold for a single event, surpassing the company's prior record for Super Bowl tickets by an impressive 25%. Furthermore, prices for field level seats have soared within the last few months to upwards of $750 per ticket. This is on par with ticket prices for other top match ups, such as this season's Bears vs. Packers tickets for Soldier Field at $900 per ticket for 50 yard line seats.

What does the boon in ticket sales for European tours mean for the future of soccer ticket sales in the United States? As the success of European club tours give the sport a new level of exposure, both club owners and secondary sellers are hopeful that fans attending these summer friendlies will acquire a taste for live soccer and begin supporting US Soccer and local MLS clubs. With the number of MLS teams gaining traction in their regional markets by lining up exhibition matches against top European teams like Manchester United, MLS sides are proving they can compete with top European clubs, consistently raising their level of play to that of their international counterparts. This sentiment is echoed by Manchester United's manager, Sir Alex Ferguson, who stated in a March 29, 2011 press conference at New Jersey's Red Bull Arena, "…with the improving quality of the MLS teams, the games are very competitive."

US soccer fans have long held the belief that the improved quality of MLS play would help attendance levels rival some of the country's biggest sports leagues. Based on sources for last year's figures, MLS season attendance reached a new milestone. According to European Football Statistics, 2010 MLS attendance ranked #7 amongst European leagues, and Sports Business Journal Daily's website cites a 7.7% average increase in attendance for the 2010 MLS season. In addition, ticket sales for the US Men's Soccer have surged as well, with the team's June 4, 2011 match against Spain at Gillette Stadium setting a new record. According to a June 4th blog post in the Boston regional edition of SBNation.com, over 64,000 tickets were sold for the event, making it the highest selling soccer event in New England history.

It has yet to be determined whether the enthusiasm behind the "Summer of Soccer" will carry into the rest of season, but one thing is clear to secondary marketplaces like Vivid Seats: the stateside demand for soccer tickets creates a new opportunity that cannot be ignored.

More About Vivid Seats Ltd.

Vivid Seats has rapidly emerged as an industry leading secondary ticket marketplace. Offering discount pricing and full service customer care across one of the widest selections of authentic tickets to events nationwide; Vivid Seats is one of the easiest, safest, and most affordable ways for fans to purchase tickets to their favorite events.

Visit www.VividSeats.com for more information on Manchester United vs. Barcelona tickets, prices and seating information.

This information was brought to you by Cision http://www.cisionwire.com

CONTACT:  Megan Porter 
          Phone: 312.291.9966 x102
          Email: megan@vividseats.com

© Copyright 2012, GlobeNewswire, Inc. All Rights Reserved


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