Azkals’ goalkeeper Patrick Deyto earns coach Michael Weiss’ praise
MANILA, Philippines–Philippine Azkals coach Michael Weiss hailed the vital performance of returning goalkeeper Patrick Deyto in their 1-0 win over Nepal in Thursday’s international friendly match at Rizal Memorial Stadium.
Deyto’s shot-stopping abilities, particularly after Jarvey Gayoso scored the only goal early in the second half, paved the way for the Azkals to end a string of defeats and give Weiss a winning start in his second tenure handling the national men’s side.
“I want to thank Patrick for his excellent performance,” Weiss said. “I was critical [of him] during the game, and in the run-up to the game. He’s trying, but he saved us during the game.”
It was Deyto’s first game in an Azkals jersey since the 2018 Asean Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup as he spent the succeeding years plying his trade for two clubs in Thailand until he became available for the latest set of matches.
“I was actually surprised that I was Man of the Match. But I did what I had to do, I did my job,” said Deyto.
WATCH: Azkals veteran goalkeeper Neil Etheridge calling this friendly match against Nepal as a TV analyst.
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The 33-year-old Deyto got the start despite Neil Etheridge being part of the squad for the June international window.
Etheridge didn’t see action due to fitness concerns owing to a long layoff following another season with Birmingham City in the English Football League (EFL) Championship.
His performance may convince Weiss to put Deyto for consideration in the final friendly of the window on Monday against Chinese-Taipei, especially if Etheridge won’t be fit enough to be available for duty.
But Deyto believes there’s plenty of room to be better, regardless if he’ll be between the sticks or sitting on the sidelines.
“It’s a good first game, good first step, but we will try to get better next game,” he said.