By Bong Pedralvez
National men’s team football coach Hans Michael Weiss has set sights on three young Filipino-Germans who could be tapped to beef up the Azkals for their World Cup opening round qualifier against Sri Lanka.
Impressing Weiss during his scouting trip in Nagold, Germany were striker Patrick Reichelt and center half Oliver Poetscke, who played key roles in a Philippine Under-20 side that placed second in the Nagold Cup.
The team, which included 16-year-old national substitute goalie Christopher Camcam, closed out the tournament with a win (3-2 vs. SSV Reutlingen), a draw (2-2 vs. Stuttgarter Kickers) and a loss (2-3 vs. VFL Nagold).
“Found some good players and tested young ones for (the) Under-23 team,” Weiss said in am e-mail message.
“Outstanding was Patrick Reichelt. He scored five goals and was very interesting to watch,” Weiss said of the 22-year-old forward who plays for the Cottbuss in the Bundesliga second division.
“Also found a strong central defender in Oliver Poetschke,” noted Weiss of the 23-year-old booter who plays for BFC Preussen Berlin in the German fifth division whose mother, Belinda, was born in Zamboanga City.
Another player, Kevin Ingreso, 19, the team captain of the Under-19 squad of Hamburger SV, “might also be considered for future assignments,” according to Weiss.
“I might invite them to come to Manila to our camp,” he added.
Weiss is expected to return to the Philippines today and is scheduled to meet with his coaching staff tomorrow to discuss the start of the national team’s fitness and conditioning camp beginning May 9 at the Alabang Country Club.
National team manager Dan Palami said in last Tuesday’s PSA forum that the first phase of the Azkals’ training would no longer be part of the tryouts “since we have already scouted enough national team potentials during our auditions in Germany and the US.”
The nationals open their home-and-away series against the Sri Lankans on June 29 in Colombo before returning to Manila for the rematch on July 3 at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium. Source