Azkals set aside club colors for single goal
MANILA, Philippinrd—Juani Guirado, Patrick Reichelt and Manny Ott went up against Simone Rota and Balot Doctora in a United Football League match Sunday night. Hours later, they were on the same flight headed for Bahrain.
Such is life with the national team as club affiliations are temporarily set aside for a common goal.
The Azkals left for Manama Monday for a weeklong training camp in preparation for the World Cup Qualifiers in June.
They will know which team they will face in the qualifiers next month when the draw is held in Kuala Lumpur. But coach Thomas Dooley is leaving no stone unturned as far as preparations are concerned.
“We want to be at our best form in June ideally,” said Dooley.
It will mark the first time this year that the Azkals are converging—since the AFF Suzuki Cup last December—as they begin their buildup for the challenges ahead.
Phil Younghusband, the country’s top international scorer, is looking forward to the camp.
“We’re excited, its been awhile and we’ve had a few months off from the national team and be in an environment where we’re away with the team,” said Younghusband. “I hear we got some new talent coming in.”
Defender Alvaro Silva has been called up to join the camp, which ends with a friendly against Bahrain on Monday.
Some Azkals arrived in Manama Monday. They were in awe upon seeing members of World Cup quarterfinalist Colombia, which was staying in the same hotel as the Azkals.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.