Setback for Azkals: Reichelt tears knee
A CANCELLED friendly and a slew of injuries have thrown off the Philippine Azkals’ preparations for the AFF Suzuki Cup kicking off on Nov. 19 at Philippine Sports Stadium in Bocaue, Bulacan.
Patrick Reichelt, a veteran of the 2012 and 2014 Suzuki Cup tournaments, became the latest player to join the injured list after suffering a torn right ACL recently.
The Ceres-La Salle standout sustained the injury while playing against S-League side Tampines Rovers in the Singapore Cup semifinals last week.
The injury rules Reichelt out of the Suzuki Cup, just like teammate Simone Rota who is set to undergo surgery for a similar injury.
It was another heavy blow for the Azkals, who had their friendly against Turkmenistan called off at the 11th hour last week.
Azkals coach Thomas Dooley rued the missed opportunity to play a full international for the first time since March 29, when they beat North Korea, 3-2, in World Cup Qualifying.
Reichelt would have added depth to the wing positions, which he shares with the likes of Iain Ramsay, Misagh Bahadoran and Stephan Schrock.
The Azkals are flying to Bishkek on Saturday for a friendly match against Kyrgyzstan on Tuesday.
Foreign-based players Ramsay (Australia) and Daisuke Sato (Romania) have already joined training sessions of the Azkals.
Azkals manager Dan Palami said Javier Patino will likely miss the match against Kyrgyzstan.
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