By Dan King - Newcastle United Club Reporter
The draw for next month's Torneo di Viareggio has been made, with the only English representatives, Newcastle United, placed in group nine.
Willie Donachie and Peter Beardsley's side have been pitted against AC Milan, Empoli and Under-17 Congo in one of 12 four-team groups for the annual tournament, which takes place between 11th February and 25th February.
As well as the top Italian sides including Juventus, Inter Milan, Napoli, Roma and Lazio, the likes of Anderlecht (Belgium), Club Nacional (Paraguay), Spartak Moscow (Russia), Honefoss (Norway), Rijeka (Croatia) and Stella Rossa (Serbia) are in this, the 65th year of the competition in Tuscany.
United will hope to get further than in 2011, when they were knocked out in the group stages, while they also took part in 2006 and 2005 with the likes of Andy Carroll, Fraser Forster, David Edgar, Haris Vuckic and Paul Dummett appearing for the Magpies in the Coppa Carnevale, as it's known because of the carnival which takes place in the region during the competition.
The full draw is:
1.) Juventus, Maribor, Avellino, APIA Leichhardt
2.) Inter Milan, Nogoom El Mostakbal, Virtus Entella, Melbourne Phoenix
3.) Torino, Honefoss, Città di Marino, Deportes Concepcion
4.) Sampdoria, Under-18 Libia, Varese, All Boys
5.) Genoa, Rijeka, Parma, Santos Laguna
6.) Rappresentativa Serie D, Anderlecht, Reggina, CSNA y Guayaquil
7.) Atalanta, Belasica Strumica, Siena, Pakhtakor
8.) Fiorentina, Nordsjaelland, Padova, Club Nacional
9.) AC Milan, Newcastle United, Empoli, Under-17 Congo
10.) Napoli, Honved Budapest, Lecce, LIAC New York
11.) Roma, Spartak Moscow, Spezia, Long Island
12.) Lazio, Stella Rossa, Juve Stabia, Mutual Uruguaya A-Net