New York Knicks star Carmelo Anthony's North American Soccer League expansion team Puerto Rico FC will host the Puerto Rico national team for a friendly on June 11 at Belson Stadium in Queens, New York -- a match that Anthony has timed to coincide with the city's Puerto Rican Day Parade festivities.
The celebrity owner is joined by actress Rosario Dawson as the honorees for the June 12 Puerto Rican Day Parade in Manhattan, which draws an estimated 1.5 million people annually. New York City's five boroughs are home to about a quarter of a million Puerto Ricans, according to the most recent U.S. Census figures.
"Puerto Rico is part of my heritage and in dedication of my father's birthplace, it's an honor to restore professional soccer with PRFC and support youth soccer projects with the Puerto Rico Football Federation," Anthony said. "With the Puerto Rican Day Parade being an iconic institution and America's largest cultural celebration, we are excited for the team to participate and show our community appreciation."
The Clasico De Futbol, will see Puerto Rico FC face off on the campus of St. Johns University, with kickoff scheduled for 7:30 p.m. The match is ahead of the North American Soccer League team's inaugural season.
Puerto Rico FC is the NASL's 13th club after the league recently added Miami FC last year. The Brooklyn-born Anthony became the club's owner in June 2015.
After sitting out the NASL's spring season, Puerto Rico FC's first home match is scheduled for July 2 at Juan Ramón Loubriel Stadium in Bayamon.