Arsenal Announce Cancellation of Emirates Cup Due to Euro 2016, Pitch Renovation

Rory MarsdenFeatured ColumnistApril 18, 2016

LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 13:  Fans walk outside the stadium prior to the Emirates FA Cup sixth round match between Arsenal and Watford at Emirates Stadium on March 13, 2016 in London, England.  (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Arsenal's Emirates Cup, the club's annual pre-season tournament at their home ground, will not take place this year due to UEFA Euro 2016 and "essential pitch reconstruction works."

The club announced the news on Monday via their official Twitter feed:

Work on a new playing surface at the Gunners' Emirates Stadium is set to begin after their final home match of the season against Aston Villa on May 15.

Club chief executive Ivan Gazidis explained the decision to cancel this year's tournament, per the Arsenal website:

We know how popular the Emirates Cup is with our fans here in the UK and around the world, so we are disappointed that we will not be hosting it this summer. The shorter pre-season window and the need to relay our pitch has resulted in this decision being taken. We look forward to hosting the tournament in 2017.

The inaugural Emirates Cup took place in 2007 and saw Arsenal prevail ahead of Paris Saint-Germain, Inter Milan and Valencia.

It has taken place every year since—aside from 2012 because of the London Olympics—with Arsenal hosting the likes of Real Madrid, Juventus, Boca Juniors and the New York Red Bulls at the two-day tournament.

France's Euro 2016 does not finish this summer until July 10, and the 2016-17 Premier League begins on August 13.

Arsenal already have pre-season matches planned in the United States against the MLS All-Stars and Chivas de Guadalajara.