Hong Kong

Black Cats set for Hong Kong tournament

Published:
by Stuart Vose

Sunderland to return to HK Soccer Sevens.

Sunderland’s youngsters will return to Hong Kong in May to take their place in the Hong Kong Soccer Sevens tournament.

The Black Cats, who have been regulars at the tournament in recent years, will be joined by fellow Premier League sides Manchester City, Chelsea, Newcastle United and Aston Villa, while Scottish side Rangers will be among the teams challenging holders Leicester City at this year’s HKFC Citibank Soccer Sevens.

In the past we’ve gone there and done well, reaching the semi-final stages, and it would be great to go one better

- Ged McNamee

The 15th edition of the tournament will be held from May 23-25 at Hong Kong Football Club - host venue since the inaugural event in 1999.

Academy manager Ged McNamee said: “We’re delighted to have been invited to take part in the tournament again.

“In the past we’ve gone there and done well, reaching the semi-final stages, and it would be great to go one better.

“It’s excellent experience for the players. With the seven v seven format, the games are physically demanding and it will be a good test."

Chelsea will compete for only the second time after making their debut two years ago, while the six other British clubs competed last May, when Leicester beat 2012 champions Newcastle 2-0 in the Cup final.

Most of the British clubs will be fielding players between the ages of 17 to 21 as they bid to win a tournament that each year features future Premier League and international stars. Aston Villa have won the event a record five times.

The remaining sides in the 16-team main competition and the line-up of the 12-team Masters competition will be announced soon, while ticket details will be announced in April.

The tournament will start with the opening round of Masters pool games on Friday evening, May 23. All the Main group matches and the remaining Masters pool games are held on the Saturday before the knock-out stages for both competitions take place on Sunday.