The home of football giants Manchester United is the venue for a special two-day poker tournament that starts this Friday. The affordable £250 buy-in should attract a bumper crowd through the doors of the famous Old Trafford ground. Among the many faces in attendance will be a number of famous Manchester United footballers.
South Africa’s Quinton Fortune is one such player who has bought in and will be vying for the title of champion. Fortune joins former Manchester United heroes Norman Whiteside, Dwight Yorke and Bryan Robson on the confirmed player list.
Robson, who captained both Manchester United and England, is hoping to transfer his football skills to his poker game when he sits down at the felt on August 9.
“I haven’t played poker for a long time,” said Robson, “so it will be interesting to see how I fare against the professionals. I have been told that you need to keep your cool and not give too much away, which is also something I was taught when playing football and I am hoping that will help me out on the day!”
Unfortunately, members of the current Manchester United squad are unable to participate due to them competing in Rio Ferdinand’s testimonial match against Sevilla that also takes place at Old Trafford on Friday. That could actually be a good thing because the infamous Tony G trained a handful of those players in the art of poker so they probably wouldn't be dead money!
It is not only former footballers whose attendance in the Old Trafford tournament add some star quality, some of poker’s superstars are also going to be battling it out at the felt inside “The Theatre of Dreams.” PartyPoker pros Kara Scott and double World Poker Tour champion “Mad” Marvin Rettenmaier are gracing the tournament with their presence and British superstar and huge Manchester United fan Sam Trickett will participate in the low-stakes event.
In addition to being able to rub shoulders with legitimate poker stars and past footballing heroes, the tournament’s participants will get the chance to explore the impressive Old Trafford ground thanks to a special behind the scenes VIP stadium tour. During the tour, there will be the chance to win some signed Manchester United merchandise, which is perfect if you are a fan of the reigning Premier League champions and still cool even if you are not.
Rounding off the weekend's festivities is the eagerly anticipated player’s party that is to be held at The Bijou Club, a premium nightclub that is spread across two floors and is most certainly one of Manchester’s celebrity hotspots. Which celebrities will you see letting their hair down in the glamorous venue?
UK & Ireland PokerNews will have an ear to the ground throughout the Old Trafford tournament and will bring you news, views and gossip from the iconic football stadium. Stay tuned!