Dan Hilferty was currently at the center of Philadelphia’s 2026 Globe Cup arranging as the chair of the nearby organizing committee. But his current move to come to be Comcast-Spectacor’s new CEO has place him even far more at the center of the action.
Comcast is amongst the most influential sponsors of the nearby Globe Cup work, and undoubtedly the most popular name. Comcast-Spectacor is just 1 branch of the enterprise, whose Television division owns the Spanish-language rights to the 2026 tournament (and this year’s women’s Globe Cup), as effectively as the rights to the English Premier League, Olympics, and U.S. national group dwelling games.
The several branches commonly operate on their personal. But for anything this massive, there’s overlap behind the scenes.
“We locate synergies and [are] figuring out how we could function closely with FIFA to strengthen the fan encounter,” Hilferty mentioned. “But also, very frankly, to make certain that not only our prospects, but Philadelphians in common have an chance to be element of this wonderful occasion.”
How that plays out will be 1 of the most significant nearby soccer stories of the subsequent 3 years. There’s currently been a lot of controversy more than plans to construct a sports field complicated in FDR Park that would serve as a Globe Cup practice facility that summer time.
A loud caucus in South Philadelphia is opposed to constructing more than park land identified as the Meadows. A similarly loud caucus has responded by noting the city’s lack of recreational sports facilities. Regional officials have attempted to claim there’s space for each.
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Protesters at a meeting in January about plans to construct a sports field complicated at FDR Park.. … Read moreJessica Griffin / Employees Photographer
Hilferty produced no reference to that topic, although that wasn’t also surprising — it is been handled far more by City Hall. But he has been involved in other places, such as a series of current meetings with FIFA on subjects like hotel capacity.
“They really feel pretty excellent about exactly where we stand,” Hilferty mentioned of FIFA. “Not only with the [stadium] web page, creating sponsorships, but also arranging about every thing from exactly where we’re going to do the fan fest to exactly where we are with all the hotels.”
The fan fest place is a further massive item when it comes to matters beyond the sports complicated, for nearby residents and out-of-town guests alike. Penn’s Landing has been the front-runner place for a when, but Hilferty mentioned there’s nevertheless no selection but.
“That’s a dialogue with the people at FIFA, and at this point we haven’t identified a final web page,” he mentioned.
The subsequent massive factor on the calendar is earning hosting rights for subsequent year’s Copa América, the South American championship tournament that will come to the U.S. as a warmup for 2026. As the 2016 Copa América Centenario did, it is anticipated to drive a spike in interest, and serve as a test run for Globe Cup host venues.
But there’s no assure that it will be played only at Globe Cup websites. Cities that came up brief in the bidding could get Copa games as a consolation prize, as could massive markets like Phoenix and Chicago that didn’t bid for Globe Cup games at all. So Philadelphia will have to compete.
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Lincoln Monetary Field hosted games in the 2016 Copa América Centenario, and could host games when the tournament returns to the United States subsequent year.. … Read moreCal Sport Media by way of AP Photos
Hilferty mentioned the Globe Cup organizing committee will not be officially involved in that, but he sent a message to the entities that will take the lead.
“I undoubtedly hope the powers that be that are involved, no matter whether it be the city, [the] Convention and Guests Bureau, that we have a excellent shot at it.”
The Eagles will also be substantially involved — and games of the Copa’s scale would undoubtedly be at Lincoln Monetary Field. Regardless of whether the U.S. plays right here or not, the crowds will simply be larger than Subaru Park’s 18,500-seat capacity.
“Our area is dwelling to a significant and passionate soccer neighborhood,” the Eagles mentioned in a statement. “We will normally be interested in participating in conversations that could lead to bringing planet-class soccer events to Lincoln Monetary Field for these fans to appreciate.”
Although the Globe Cup committee may well not be officially involved in Copa América arranging, Hilferty knows that absolutely everyone in town shares duty for having marquee events right here ahead of 2026. The Linc hasn’t hosted a massive soccer game because August 2019, when the U.S. females came to town immediately after the Globe Cup and drew almost 50,000 fans — the most significant crowd for a standalone friendly in group history.
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The U.S. women’s soccer group drew 49,504 fans to Lincoln Monetary Field for a game there in 2019.. … Read moreMitchell Leff / Getty Photos
The pandemic has naturally been a element, but 3 and a half years is a lengthy sufficient wait. European teams will return to the U.S. for tours this summer time, and there will be the Concacaf men’s Gold Cup.
Nor has the web page for the men’s Nations League final 4 been set but. That is the occasion exactly where the U.S. will probably play Europe-primarily based stars such as Medford’s Brenden Aaronson and Downingtown’s Zack Steffen, so they can take the summer time off. They haven’t played at the Linc ahead of, and it is quick to picture them having a raucous reception.
“If it is international events, if it is nearby events like the Unity Cup, to perhaps having some [English Premier League] teams to come and play [here], we’re seeking at all sorts of possibilities,” Hilferty mentioned. “Obviously the city’s involved, the Convention and Guests Bureau is involved, the Eagles are involved, the Union are involved. So we continue to appear for strategies to develop the game by inviting premier teams to play right here — males and females.”
Final week, Hilferty was 1 of the guests of honor at the Union’s annual Legends of Soccer fundraiser dinner for the team’s charity foundation. The occasion raised far more than $282,000.
“We’re all pretty proud of the Philadelphia Union, [what] the Philadelphia Union Foundation does for our wonderful neighborhood of Chester and effectively beyond,” he mentioned.
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Dan Hilferty (left) with Union element-owner Richard Leibovitch on stage at the Union Foundation’s Legends of Soccer Gala dinner.. … Read moreJonathan Tannenwald / Employees