Neil Etheridge leads Azkals roster for next World Cup qualifying games
MANILA, Philippines–Neil Etheridge headlined the 26-man lineup the Philippine Azkals will have for their first two matches in the second round of the World Cup/Asian Cup Qualifiers this month.
Etheridge will be joined by players who have been regular fixtures since coach Michael Weiss’ return when the Azkals take on Vietnam on Nov. 16 and Indonesia on Nov. 21, both at Rizal Memorial Stadium.
Patrick Reichelt and brothers Manny and Mike Ott are other notable players who were called up by Weiss for the joint qualifiers.
Kenshiro Daniels, OJ Porteria, Stephan Schrock, Marwin Angeles, Bienvenido Maranon, Audie Menzi, Justin Baas, Kevin Ingreso, Cholo Bugas, Simen Lyngbo and Dennis Villanueva will also join the Azkals for the international window.
Atletico Madrid U-19 player Santi Rublico, Japanese-based Jefferson Tabinas, Jesse Curran, Christian Rontini and veterans Carli de Murga, Daisuke Sato and Simone Rota are the defenders who are going to be tapped to put up a strong effort at the back against their fellow Southeast Asian foes.
Kevin Ray Mendoza and Patrick Deyto, meanwhile, are going to be secondary options behind Etheridge at the goalkeeping spot.
The Azkals were drawn in a tough Group F that included Iraq, with two spots for the third round of the World Cup Qualifiers and the Asian Cup at stake.
The lower two teams in the group will be relegated to the third round of the Asian Cup Qualifiers.