Florida Cup soccer tournament returns in 2016

Plans are underway for the second edition of the Florida Cup, a January soccer tournament featuring European and South American clubs on winter break. It is a way for foreign teams to get some practice and exhibition games in and also expand their brands in the United States.

The 2016 tournament is Jan. 10-20 and expected to include German Bundesliga teams Bayer Leverkusen and Schalke 04, Colombian team Santa Fe, Ukrainian team Shakhtar Donetsk, the Fort Lauderdale Strikers, and Brazilian teams Corinthians, Fluminense, Atletico Mineiro and Internacional.

Matches will be played at the Citrus Bowl and ESPN Wide World of Sports in Orlando, FAU Stadium in Boca Raton, and Lockhart Stadium in Fort Lauderdale.

The preliminary schedule for the four South Florida games is: Schalke 04 vs. Atletico Mineiro (Jan. 13, Lockhart Stadium); Atletico Mineiro v. Corinthians (Jan. 17, FAU); Santa Fe vs. Strikers (Jan. 17, FAU); and Fluminense vs. Internacional (Jan. 20, Lockhart).

Last year was the first year of the tournament, and it featured mainly Brazilian and German clubs. Most of the teams will get to Florida just after New Year’s Day, train for a week to 10 days and then compete in the Florida Cup.

Tickets go on sale Nov. 20.