News. Nobby Solano: 'Football in the USA is rapidly growing and Newcastle United can be a big part of this'

13 May 23

Newcastle United hero Nobby Solano has helped inspire the next generation of football fans in Atlanta, Georgia, as the club prepares to head Stateside this July as part of the Premier League's Summer Series

The Magpies will take part in the first ever Summer Series in the USA, with Eddie Howe's men visiting Atlanta for a training camp along with a game against Chelsea on Wednesday, 26th July at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Ahead of the summer visit, CEO Darren Eales led a visit to Atlanta alongside Solano, who coached at one of the city's popular Station Soccer programmes.

Over 30 youngsters took part in the session with Solano as he delivered a coaching workshop as well as surprising the participants with Newcastle United gift bags. Commenting on the session, Solano spoke of the growing passion for football that he is seeing in the US.

"Football is huge around the world and in America it is becoming more and more popular," he said. "America is sport crazy and football is gaining more and more fans. People in America are now talking about football, whether it is the MLS or the Premier League, so Newcastle United can be a big part of this growth.

"The special thing about the Premier League is that fans around the world watch it and want to pick a football team to follow. For me, that team can be Newcastle United because it has great history, players, and right now the club is an exciting place with the ambitions on and off the pitch.

"Hopefully by spending time here in Atlanta we can help tell the story of Newcastle United, what the football club means to people back in the North East, and make people feel a connection. Imagine if we can help young fans to become Newcastle fans."

The former midfield man made over 200 appearances for the Magpies during his two spells at the club, taking part in a number of pre-season trips around the world, with the Peruvian excited by the club's upcoming trip to the USA where the side will play games in Philadelphia and New Jersey as well as Atlanta.

"Pre-season is always a good time to bond with your team-mates and spend quality time together, making sure that everybody is ready for the season ahead," said Solano. "For the club to play in good quality stadiums against tough opposition is a good thing and something that helps to start a season very well.

"I remember wherever we went on pre-season we would always have a good following of supporters and it will be the same this summer. If we can gain new fans along the way that it will be really special."

Solano's coaching session at the Station Soccer is part of a community-inspired football session which sees mini football pitches created throughout Atlanta, alongside the city's metro stations, making football accessible to young sports fans. The programme has been running for a number of years and was championed by Darren Eales during his time at Atlanta United.

There are limited tickets still available for Newcastle's matches in the USA, with further details available online via the Premier League's website here.

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