The Premier League will consider expanding its biennial summer tournament around the world after the chief executive, Richard Scudamore, said Africa and the United States are among the possible hosts for a tournament similar to the Asia Trophy, which was won by Manchester City on Saturday in Hong Kong.
While Scudamore conceded that pitch condition and location were among lessons to be learned following the torrential rain that threatened to ruin this year's event, he said of holding other competitions elsewhere in two years' time: "If we were to expand it all, there would be more venues rather than more teams.
"We wouldn't play more teams in one tournament – you'd be better off going to new places. So one in Asia, maybe one in Africa, America, something like that. At the same time of year. Take more teams but in different tournaments. I can't ever see us not doing a tournament in Asia, so every other [time] I'm absolutely sure we'll be coming back to Asia."
Of the heavy downpours that came close to preventing any matches being played on the Hong Kong Stadium pitch, he added: "We have to be happy that we got four matches away and four matches away safely – and they were actually quite competitive really. There will be a good debrief from this, obviously there are lessons to be learned, there always are. I think the clubs are not expecting to see pitches like they have at home. We're not hiding from the fact that the pitch has been very difficult and we will have to look at the criteria for where we take this next time.
"Given where the game has gone at home, the increase in quality of pitches, where now sports science is, where technically players are, we probably are going to have to put some stricter criteria on pitch provision. We will make pitch quality and pitch durability, sustainability and preparation as very important criteria.
"As I say, the games have gone off well, they've been refereed well – look at the attendance – so we've delivered on everything, we don't control the weather.
"The time of year we have no choice, you get lucky, you get unlucky. This is our sixth one in Asia. Even the locals have said they've never had a 10-day period like this – this type of rain at this time of year - so it's a fairly unique set of circumstances, it's a force majeure event effectively. We have worked tirelessly. It was literally down to the wire but, as you see, a game of football broke out and a game of football broke out."
Scudamore also revealed the Premier League has made it easier for clubs to take a larger contingent of away fans. "Keeping away attendances high is our most strategically important thing just now," he said. "We have changed the rules.
"It was quite brutal. You either had to take 1,500 or 3,000 on a sale or return basis. It is quite difficult for a club who might have 2,000 who could come. They are not going to take the extra 1,500 and not sell 1,000.
"You can take whatever allocation you can agree as long as you sell half of them. It is more flexible. Because the clubs are risk averse, they end up buying fewer tickets than they need rather than enough to meet the demand."