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Hong Kong Soccer Sevens: Tournament preview

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Hong Kong Soccer Sevens: Tournament preview

The 2019 edition of the Hong Kong Soccer Sevens tournament begins this weekend, with Aston Villa once again in attendance at the annual competition.

Mark Delaney and his squad have arrived and are preparing for our latest crack at the title we have lifted six times – more than any other club.

Below is all the information you'll need ahead of the tournament, as well as details of how you can follow it across the weekend.

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What is the Hong Kong Soccer Sevens tournament?

Launched in 1999, the seven-a-side football competition takes place every year in the month of May.

Hosting a number of professional English clubs, the tournament gives the next generation of talent the opportunity to compete on the international stage against teams from all over the world.

The likes of Jack Grealish and Gabby Agbonlahor have previously enjoyed success in Hong Kong with the claret and blues.

ClarkeDelaneyHK

How does the format work?

We will take part in what is known as the 'Main Tournament'.

Sixteen teams split across four groups compete against each other in the preliminary stages, in matches that are seven minutes per half with a one-minute break at half-time.

The top two sides in the group qualify for the knockout rounds, where games increase to two 10-minute halves and a three-minute break at the interval.

In the latter stages, matches will go to extra-time (where teams are reduced to four-a-side) and penalties to determine winners.

What's our track record at the tournament?

We've won it more than any other club – six times in total (2002, 2004, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2016).

We last tasted success three years ago, beating West Ham United in the final.

Last season, we won the secondary prize – the Hong Kong Soccer Sevens Shield.

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Who is playing for Villa this year?

Mark Delaney has selected the following squad for this year's tournament.

Jack Clarke and Isiah Bazeley-Graham represent the senior members of the group having travelled before. For the rest, it's their first time at the event.

Akos Onodi (GK)
Isaiah Bazeley-Graham
Bradley Burton
Dominic Revan
Lewis Brunt
Jaden Philogene-Bidace
Aaron Pressley
Jack Clarke
Cameron Archer
Indiana Vassilev

We are in Group B, and will face Leicester City, Kitchee and Singapore Cricket Club.

How can I follow it?

All matches will be streamed via the tournament's Official YouTube channel.

We'll also have updates across channels as we go for our seventh Soccer Sevens title.

Dan Connor
By @danconnor 17th May 2019