West Ham United take on the Major League Soccer All-Stars on Thursday night with Alan Curbishley ready for a major occasion in a true "sporting city".
Toronto is the place to be in the sporting right now world with soccer superstar David Beckham, NBA great Steve Nash, elite golfer Mike Weir and tennis masters Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer among those in the city. With major broadcasters and leading media outlets all converging on the team hotel, there seems to be a camera crew or press photographer at every turn - with autograph hunters not far behind.
Alan Curbishley and his players are relishing the spotlight. Having had an afternoon off on Tuesday to take in some of the sporting sights along with a trip to Niagara Falls and even an Eagles concert, the squad are ready to become the main attraction themselves. "Ever since the game was programmed in, the feedback has been wait until you get to Toronto....," said the manager. "It is a sporting city and we have found that out in the last couple of days with so many events going on. The atmosphere around the city at the moment is second to none."
As West Ham United fans roll in to town and with a sell-out crowd expected at the impressive BMO Field, there is plenty of excitement ahead of the kick-off. "We have heard about the [passion of the] Toronto fans and we saw a bit of it yesterday. We are looking forward to it. Our fans get behind the team as well so we are looking forward to it. No matter how many games you play and how experienced you are this is a new experience for us. We have really enjoyed the week so far and would like to finish it with a result against the MLS."