Football: Champions City headline Asian pre-season line-up

LONDON (AFP) - Manchester City will headline the Asia Trophy in Hong Kong later this year as the Premier League champions join their English top-flight rivals Tottenham and Sunderland in the pre-season tournament.

City, Tottenham and Sunderland will compete with local side South China FC at the biennial knockout event from July 24-27.

It will be City's second appearance in the tournament, having finished third in Thailand in 2005, and their second successive pre-season trip to the Far East after touring China and Malaysia last year.

Spurs were last involved in 2009, when they beat Hull in the final, while Sunderland will be making a first appearance.

"The Asia Trophy will be a fantastic challenge for Manchester City," City manager Roberto Mancini said.

"It gives us the opportunity to showcase the club's footballing talent to our supporters in Hong Kong, which is such a vibrant venue to host a high quality tournament like this."

Hong Kong has twice staged the tournament before, in 2007 and 2011, and all matches will be played at the national stadium.

The Asia Trophy is the only tournament held outside of the UK affiliated to the Premier League.