Barclays Asia Trophy 2013

The Barclays Asia Trophy was played in Hong Kong from July 24 to 27 and saw Sunderland, Manchester City, Tottenham Hotspur and South China compete. Manchester City were the winners, beating Sunderland 1–0 in the final. The tournament was dogged by issues with Hong Kong Stadium's waterlogged pitch, which was blamed for an ankle injury sustained by Spurs defender Jan Vertonghen.

SOCCER

Barclays Asia Trophy 2013 - Day 2 live blog

Follow live as Tottenham Hotspur take on South China and Manchester City play Sunderland at Hong Kong Stadium

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 27 July, 2013, 4:52pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 27 July, 2013, 7:39pm
 

Some snark from UK-based footy journos:

 

And the rain's coming down again, just in time to muddy the pitch some more for the final.

Realised - rather belatedly - that Adebayor is not on bench for Spurs. Must have picked up a knock or AVB didn't want to risk him. Spurs a bit light up front this season? 

68min Subs for Spurs

Huddlestone > Dembele

Fryers  > Rose

Townsend > Lennon

Livermore  > Parker

65min Dhiego gets free again on the right, but once more tries a shot when he should have crossed. Good on the ball, but damn selfish. Spurs about to make triple sub

60min Some great one-touch possession play from Spurs, South China running in circles. Eventually Carroll releases Defoe with great ball. He opts not to shoot, but his pass back for Sigurdsson just misses the Icelander

Then Defoe is nearly put through again - this time Zhang, heart in his mouth probably, just manages to make the clearance

56min Defoe nearly straight in for a hattrick but Pavlovic and Zhang just stop him on the line. Then Dhiego has a shot for South China which shoots into orbit and has probably just landed in Stanley.

Meanwhile, biggest cheer of the day as stadium big screen shows Manchester United's David Moyes, Ryan Giggs and Michael Carrick in the stands

53min GOAL TOTTENHAM 4 South China 0. A good diagonal ball sent in Defoe's direction from the left. Goalkeeper Zhang comes out to try to clear, but kicks it against Defoe, who can stroll through to tap into an empty net. Bad one from Zhang

51min Sean Tse does well to head away another good Sigurdsson free-kick. Some great deliveries from him today

Carroll, 21,  highly rated by Spurs. First I've seen of him. Looks like Spurs have switched to 4-2-3-1, Parker and Dembele in the pivot, Sigurdsson Carroll, Lennon left to right behind Defoe

Second half underway. Subs for South China: Pavlovic for Padilha and Stephen Liu for Lo Kong-wai. Kyle Naughton on for Kyle Walker and Tom Carroll on for Dempsey for Spurs

Half time - Tottenham 3 South China 0. More than merited for Spurs, who have been in complete control. They could have had five or six. Expect AVB will make plenty of changes for next half. Meanwhile, maybe 25 elderly looking folk are stamping on divots on the sandpit.

Meanwhile, here's a pic of said sandpit I took about an hour ago but my phone has only now decided to send due to the lead lining of the HK Stadium or whatever it is that wrecks reception here.

 

44min GOAL TOTTENHAM 3  South China 0. From the foul on Dempsey, Walker blasts a free kick into the wall. Falls perfectly for Defoe to tuck away from close range. And that's half-time

43min Defoe with another half-chance, but Walker's cross from the right is fizzed just a little too high for him to get a proper head on it. Dempsey then rugby tackled by Mesquita when he looked to be surging clear. Bit naughty

Guardian's Jamie Jackson reckons David Moyes is here somewhere. Must be one of the boxes 

 

37min South China get a shot, well kind of, in. Dhiego de Souza Martins jinks into the box but his effort is more of a pass back to Lloris. Should have tried to find a teammate

34min GOAL TOTTENHAM 2 South China 0. Jermain Defoe skins Sean Tse on left of the area and cuts it back for Dempsey to side-foot in right-footed from seven yards out. Well-deserved

28min Defoe hits the post after a great free kick from the left touchline falls to him at the back stick. Little flicked header

26min Dempsey sent clear by a nice Parker long pass, tries to chip keeper from 20 yards, but it goes over

25min Nice play Spurs. Another good ball from Lennon, Dempsey's volley at the back post is blocked but falls to Sigurdsson, he steps inside a defender and plays a one-two with Dempsey, but his cut-back is blocked for a corner. 

23min Walker seemed to be fouled in the box by Padilha, but referee gives it the other way. 

20min Sout China get an effort of sorts on target - looked like a cross rather than a shot - before Lennon flies down the right again. Sigurdsson looks certain to drive his cutback in from the spot, but Aender Naves Mesquita gets a foot in

16min Sean Tse almost immediately heads in his second own goal in two minutes as Tottenham begin to dominate. Moments later, Aaron Lennon beats a couple of men and stands a nice ball up from the right of the penalty area, but it's headed clear. Then Defoe is sent clear and seems certain to doubtle the score but for a great tackle by Joel Bertoti Padilha

12min GOAL TOTTENHAM 1 South China 0 Dembele puts Dempsey in down the left and he back heels from the byeline to Rose, whose driven shot is directed into his own net by Sean Tse.

 The layer of sand / sawdust / ground-up rhino horn and whatever else in the middle of the pitch is starting to cut up.

7min Tottenham 0 South China 0 South China get their first sniff of an attack, Michael Luk Chi-ho crossing from the right, but Walker prevents Mamadou Barry getting a head on it at the back stick. Scott Parker sticking the boot in a bit 

 

5min Tottenham 0 South China 0 Couple of early half-chances for Spurs from a corner. Big contingent of their fans, some from Indonesia and beyond, making noise in the North Stand. Danny Rose almost just found Jermain Defoe with a great cross from the left, just not quite perfect for the striker

5.57pm Teams are out, and the sun is shining for the first time in about six months, it feels like. 

5.46pm Just over quarter of an hour til kick-off. In place in the press box. Pitch looks an absolute sandy disgrace, trying to get a pic off my phone for you.

5.22pm I created a Twitter list with the clubs, a lot of the players etc. Probably following already if you're a fan, but if you want them all in one place, here it is:

 

5.16pm No Gareth Bale of course, as he recovers from a gluteus strain, or prepares to join Real Madrid, depending on who you believe. He is here, emerged last off the team bus, long after everyone else. Didn't look in a good mood. Marca could probably write a two-page spread on those last two sentences alone.

Otherwise it's pretty much Spurs' strongest side, or near it, despite Andre Villas-Boas' fears over the pitch.

Manchester United have arrived in Hong Kong and are scheduled to play Kitchee on Monday. According to some reports in the English press, they were perusing their contract for the friendly to see if there were any escape clauses they could exploit. Believe it if you will. Manager David Moyes did have this to say in Japan last night though: 

“I do have concerns about the surface but it’s mainly due to  the weather and that’s an act of God, so we can’t do anything about that.”

5.06pm The teams are in. Spurs quite similar to Wednesday's team, would imagine they will line up 4-3-3. South China I haven't seen enough to know.

Spurs:

Lloris

Walker    Dawson (C)    Caulker    Rose

         Dembele   Parker   Sigurdsson

Lennon                                  Dempsey

     Defoe 

 

South China: Zhang, Tse, Bertoldi, Mesquita, Kwok, De Souza Martins, Sealy, Luk, Lo, Barry, Padilha

Hello and welcome to our latest Barclays Asia Trophy live blog. Pitch looks very sandy and poor at Hong Kong Stadium, but it seems that the event is going ahead as planned. 

When I arrived around 4pm, fans were being locked out as a pitch inspection took place and it didn't look good, with the pitch being heavily criticised in the build-up by the Premier League clubs' managers. 

But it looks like we're good to go here. First up is Tottenham Hotspur v South China in the third-place play-off at 6pm, then it's Manchester City and Sunderland in the final at 8.30pm.

Stay tuned here for the latest updates and build-up, then minute-by-minute commentary. Tweet me at @jamesporteous or email james.porteous@scmp.com to get involved.

 

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