The end of the regular season means only one thing for those of us who keep an eye on our next generation – it’s the wait for news on the Hong Kong Soccer Sevens tournament.
Wait no more as we now have the details.
Mark Delaney has picked his group of youngsters that will be looking to extend our success in the tournament and there are some familiar names in the travelling party that will be looking to add their names to our string of competitions wins.
Villa have won the competition numerous times in 2002, 2004, 2007, 2008, 2010 and 2016 and taken a number of other prizes in other years owing to our efforts.
Former right back and Under 23 coach Delaney told the Official Site.
“It’s an experienced team we’ve taken in terms of players having sampled first-team football, U23s football and the Hong Kong tournament itself. It’s a strong group this year. We’re looking to come back with the trophy and go one better than last time around.”
No other club in the tournament history going back to 1999 has tasted greater success than ourselves with six titles and the group picked by Delaney to travel this year, are:
Delaney’s reference to going ‘one better’ is in relation to the fact we lost in the Final last year to Leicester City. Boosting those hopes are the season our youngsters have had with almost two reasons to cheer – Play-Off Heartbreak For Aston Villa Youngsters and Premier League Cup Success For Aston Villa.
Our Group B opponents this time around are:
Hong Kong FC Captain’s Select
Those games take place on Saturday as we look to progress through to the knockout rounds on Sunday in the seven a side format – should we reach the knockouts on Sunday Villa will update the schedule and be streaming those matches as well.
The squad flew out on Tuesday and Saturday’s schedule is as follows:
Saturday 19th May
Aston Villa v Hong Kong FC Captain’s Select – Group B
Kick-off: 9.50am local time (2.50am UK) – Coverage: Click Here.
Aston Villa v Kitchee – Group B
Kick-off: 11.30am local time (4.30am UK) – Coverage: Click Here.
Aston Villa v Cagliari Calcio – Group B
Kick-off: 3.15pm local time (7.15am UK) – Coverage: Click Here.
For any newbies to this tournament (where have you been I’ve been covering this for yonks!), Villa have produced a handy quick guide to the competition, it’s format and its background – Click Here.
Suffice to say, the likes of Gabby Agbonlahor, Jack Grealish and Daniel Johnson have taken their opportunity to shine in this competition in previous years, so it’s always been good for us on that front. Many will be looking to Callum O’Hare and Corey Blackett-Taylor, in particular, to grow their names further on an attacking front but plenty of others can more than showcase their own defensive strength.