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ESPN FC's Stewart Robson explains why Real Madrid should explore other options before making Gareth Bale the focal point of the team.

This article first appeared on ESPN on April 17 and has been updated.

The International Champions Cup returns in July, with games between the leading clubs in the world played across three continents in July and August.

Here, we pick out six of the biggest games coming up this summer.

July 25: Manchester City vs. Liverpool, MetLife Stadium (East Rutherford, New Jersey)

Manchester City will arrive in the United States as Premier League champions, but they will face Liverpool having lost all three of their meetings with Jurgen Klopp's team in 2018. If anyone knows how to defeat City and Pep Guardiola, it is Liverpool's coach, and this clash in New Jersey promises to be a taster for next season's title race in England.

Liverpool's £62 million signing Naby Keita is set to feature following his much-anticipated arrival from RB Leipzig, alongside Fabinho and Xherdan Shaqiri. City should also showcase their big summer signing, Riyad Mahrez, as they look to build a squad capable of winning the Champions League next season.

July 26: Arsenal vs. Atletico Madrid, National Stadium (Kallang, Singapore)

With the two clubs meeting in the Europa League semifinals, this clash in Singapore will offer the Gunners a quick chance for revenge as they prepare for the new campaign. The big question mark hanging over Arsenal as they head into the summer, however, is how they adapt to new manager Unai Emery following 22 years under the guidance of Arsene Wenger.

Arsenal's failure to challenge for Champions League qualification via the Premier League has left him work to do and there are a host of new faces already at the club, with Bernd Leno, Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Stephan Lichtsteiner and Matteo Guendouzi all set to play a part. Mesut Ozil is even on the plane after a poor World Cup with Germany.

Could this meeting with Atletico be the start of a new era or simply more of the same for the Gunners?

July 28: Manchester United vs. Liverpool, Michigan Stadium (Ann Arbor, Michigan)

Manchester United and Liverpool will renew their rivalry in the United States this summer.

The biggest game in English football is set for The Big House -- the giant home stadium of the University of Michigan football team -- with Manchester United and Liverpool aiming to draw an even bigger crowd than the 109,318 attendance for United's friendly against Real Madrid in the stadium in August 2014. The two clubs, which have won 38 English titles between them (United 20, Liverpool 18), met outside England for the first time in 2014, when they contested the final of the ICC in Miami, with Louis van Gaal's United winning on that occasion.

For United, the likes of Romelu Lukaku, Marouane Fellaini, Paul Pogba, Jesse Lingard, Marcus Rashford, Phil Jones and Ashley Young won't be playing, while it remains to be seen if Alexis Sanchez will obtain a visa to travel to the U.S.

With the two teams expected to emerge as the closest challengers to Manchester City in the Premier League next season, this encounter could give clues as to which will be the best bet to dethrone Guardiola's men.

July 31: Roma vs. Barcelona, AT&T Stadium (Arlington, Texas)

This game might have been on the undercard this summer prior to the incredible encounter in the Stadio Olimpico that saw Roma overturn a 4-1 first-leg deficit against Barcelona to eliminate the La Liga giants in the Champions League quarterfinal stage. After that unforgettable night in Rome, this meeting between the two sides in Texas has become one of the must-see games of the summer, with Barca offered an early chance to hit back.

For Roma, the fixture will be an opportunity to gauge their prospects of winning Serie A for the first time since 2001 next season, while Barcelona simply need to get the Champions League defeat out of their system as quickly as possible.

July 31: Real Madrid vs. Manchester United, Hard Rock Stadium (Miami, Florida)

This is a game that has become an annual "Who will Gareth Bale be playing for?" competition. So far, the Wales winger has remained at Real Madrid, but speculation continues to link the former Tottenham man with a big-money move to Old Trafford, especially after Cristiano Ronaldo's exit. Jose Mourinho is a confirmed admirer of the 28-year-old, who is expected to be involved throughout this summer's ICC due to Wales' failure to qualify for the World Cup.

With or without Bale, Mourinho is expected to make wholesale changes to his squad, though has only brought in Fred and Diogo Dalot thus far. 

Real are also in the hunt for reinforcements with €100million of Ronaldo money to spend, but United will fight hard to ensure that goalkeeper David De Gea remains out of the Spanish club's reach. The goalkeeper may very well be lining up in one of the goals after Spain's early exit from the World Cup.

Aug. 4: Real Madrid vs. Juventus, FedEx Field (Landover, Maryland)

Even after they sealed a blockbuster €100m move for Ronaldo this summer, Juve's anger might still be simmering by the time this game comes around. Passions are certain to be stirred by memories of the controversial Champions League quarterfinal exit against Real in the Santiago Bernabeu, which saw Gianluigi Buffon sent off by referee Michael Oliver deep inside stoppage time.

Buffon has departed, with the 40-year-old goalkeeper joining PSG. But Juventus will be determined to strike a blow against Real and this is a game that has an extra sense of edge to it. Even with Ronaldo unlikely to make the trip to Maryland to face his old side.

Mark Ogden is a senior football writer for ESPN FC. Follow him @MarkOgden_

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