On June 5, Mayor Jim Kenney; Parks & Recreation Commissioner Kathryn Ott Lovell; Rafael Toro, Director of Public Relations at GOYA Foods; Don Smolenski, President of Philadelphia Eagles; Miriam Enriquez, Director of the Office of Immigrant Affairs (OIA); and other City officials hosted a ceremony to draw teams for the opening rounds of the second annual Philadelphia International Unity Cup presented by Goya Foods.
Mayor Kenney drew balls labeled with the names of the 48 participating teams to determine matchups for the initial rounds of the tournament. The ceremony was held in the Touchdown Club at Lincoln Financial Field, as the Unity Cup championship game will be played at the stadium on November 11, 2017.
This year, an additional 16 teams will participate in the Philadelphia International Unity Cup, presented by Goya Foods, totaling 48 teams, representing various countries. The teams will be divided into four groups:
1. 2016 Top 12 Finishers
2. Asia and South America
3. Africa, Caribbean and Independent
4. Europe, Middle East and Central America
Mayor Kenney drew one team from each group’s designated bucket, forming 12 different groups for the rounds of the tournament. The rounds selected are as follows:
Group A: Sierra Leone, Cambodia, Haiti, Israel
Group B: Jamaica, Mongolia, Algeria, Belarus
Group C: Guatemala, Thailand, Refugee Team, Italy
Group D: United States, Myanmar, Togo, Honduras
Group E: Liberia, Venezuela, South Africa, Serbia
Group F: Germany, Bhutan, Ethiopia, Iraq
Group G: Ivory Coast, Vietnam, Nigeria, Lithuania
Group H: DR Congo, Colombia, Senegal, France
Group I: Argentina, India, Sudan, Bosnia Herzegovina
Group J: Puerto Rico, Indonesia, Morocco, Greece
Group K: Mexico, South Korea, Cameroon, Ireland
Group L: Ukraine, Brazil, Ghana, Panama
City officials also announced the launch of Passport PHL 2017. The initiative, now in its second iteration, encourages residents to explore the city’s diverse neighborhoods and support immigrant-owned businesses. The pair of announcements kicked off the 2017 Immigrant Heritage Month celebrations.