The much anticipated Manchester derby was officially canceled due to poor weather and field conditions, The Guardian reports. Manchester United and Manchester City were slated to face off tonight at Bird's Nest Stadium. However, the heavy rains, which have been pounding Beijing recently, have left the field in extremely poor condition.
“Due to recent weather events, tournament organizers and participating clubs have made the decision to cancel tonight’s International Champions Cup fixture to be played in Beijing tonight, 25 July,” a spokesperson for Manchester United said.
The field's condition has been of major concern in recent days. Teams were forced to train at the Olympic Sports Village due to bad conditions at Bird's Nest. Yesterday, managers Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola both expressed concern over their players' physical wellbeing if they were to take the field in tonight’s grudge match.
Manchester City even sent groundsman Craig Knight to Beijing 10 days ago to get the field in playable condition. However, despite efforts the match was officially called off just a few hours before it was set to begin, leaving thousands of fans – in Beijing and around the world – disappointed.
[Main image via Reuters]