Plans are being finalized for the 2009 Premier League Asia Trophy. So far, Chelsea, West Ham United and Hull City have been invited to participate in the tournament which is likely to be held in China, in either Beijing or Shanghai.
The 2007 edition of the tournament was hosted in Hong Kong where Portsmouth won the competition after beating Liverpool on penalty kicks in the final.
The 2009 tournament will be the fourth time the Premier League Asia Trophy has been played. The contest began in 2003 in Malaysia where Chelsea were the eventual champions. In 2005, Thailand were the hosts where Bolton won top honors. And the 2007 tournament in Hong Kong was the most successful one to date.
If the 2009 tournament isn’t played in China, the next likely host countries will be South Korea and then Hong Kong.
If Chelsea accepts the invitation to play in the 2009 Premier League Asia Trophy, it’ll severely put their chances of playing friendlies in the United States next summer in doubt. It’s unlikely that Chelsea will want to travel to North America and Asia during the preseason.