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United cancel Hong Kong open training session

ESPN staff
July 27, 2013 « Live County Championship coverage | Chartbeat test »
The state of the Hong Kong Stadium pitch has been a worry © Getty Images
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Manchester United have cancelled their open training session scheduled for Sunday at the Hong Kong Stadium - with manager David Moyes raising concerns about the state of the pitch.

The venue has played host to the Barclays Asia Trophy over the past few days, but torrential rain has badly affected the surface, with Sunderland manager Paolo Di Canio describing it as 'as a killer pitch' and Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas losing Jan Vertonghen for potentially three weeks after suffering ankle ligament damage.

Matches involving the Sunderland, Tottenham and Manchester City were also delayed and shortened to 40 minutes as a consequence of the rain.

Moyes has revealed his fears over the pitch, and on landing in Hong Kong for the final stint of their tour in Asia, the United manager said: "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."

United will be facing local side FC Kitchee on Monday, but the training session has been cancelled, and a statement from United's website read: "Manchester United, Kitchee FC and the Hong Kong Football Association have reluctantly made the decision to cancel the open training session planned for tomorrow [July 28] evening at the Hong Kong Stadium.

The pitch has suffered from torrential rainfall in the last week and has staged a number of games in a very short space of time. The club has consulted with the Hong Kong FA and has also taken advice from Kitchee FC. In the absence of any other suitable facility at such short notice, the open session has regrettably been cancelled."

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