Major League Soccer has announced Premier League giants Arsenal as the opponents for the league's All-Star team this summer, with the match set to be played in San Jose, California, on Thursday, July 28.
MLS' official Twitter account confirmed the news with a short video:
Major League Soccer @MLS
And the 2016 @ATT #MLSAllStar opponent is… https://t.co/r5hdaKxc0U2016-2-11 17:30:07
The MLS All-Stars have been taking on foreign guests during the All-Star Game since 2005 and beat Arsenal's fierce rivals Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 last year.
The match will be a part of Arsenal's pre-season tour, and the Gunners will play a second match on American soil against Chivas de Guadalajara in Los Angeles three days later, per the club's official website.
Gunners manager Arsene Wenger is excited to return to the USA after their visit to the east coast in 2014:
Pre-season is a critically important time for us and we are delighted to be going to San Jose and Los Angeles to participate in the 2016 MLS All-Star game and to play Chivas.
We have tremendous support across America and enjoyed our visit to New York in the summer of 2014 when we played the New York Red Bulls at Red Bull Arena. We look forward to giving our US fans the chance to see the team play live.
They'll face a tough challenge against the MLS All-Stars, who have won their last two matches against Spurs and Bayern Munich. Their players tend to be in midseason form by the time the All-Star game rolls around, which is a major advantage over the visiting clubs from Europe, who are usually still early in their preparations for the new campaign.
Per ESPN FC's Paul Carr, the MLS All-Stars have fared well against English opposition:
Paul Carr @PCarrESPN
Arsenal will be the 7th different English opponent for the @MLS All-Stars. MLS is 5-2-1 in previous 8 games (2x vs Chelsea & Man United).2016-2-11 17:45:08
Per the Gunners' official website, the two pre-season matches will be Arsenal's only appearances outside Europe before the start of the Premier League campaign. Ticket information will be revealed at a later date.