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Aston Villa arrive in H.K. for Asia Trophy

07-25-2011 09:11 BJT

English Premier League side Aston Villa has arrived in Hong Kong, ready to contest the Asia Trophy. However, conspicuous by his absence as the team touched down was new manager Alex McLeish.

While McLeish is expected to join the club later this week as they prepare for the Asia Trophy pre-season tournament - also featuring Chelsea, Blackburn Rovers and Hong Kong champions Kitchee - his short tenure at Villa Park has already been marred by controversy. Supporter resentment in the Villa ranks is widespread against the former boss of Villa's bitter rivals Birmingham City.

McLeish's first signing, goalkeeper Shay Given, did make the trip Sunday. The Republic of Ireland goalkeeper joined the team from Manchester City only recently.

Aston Villa captain Stiliyan Petrov says with a new manager and plenty of doubters to win over, Villa will be taking their pre-season stop off in Hong Kong seriously.

"Yes, we all try our hardest because we all want to see what level of fitness we are. We just start the pre-season. It's going to be competitive games. Every time that the two Premierships meet, they try to be competitive so we will do that as well. And like I said, we are looking forward to it." Said Stiliyan Petrov.

Editor:Zou Xian |Source: CNTV.CN

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