Several key Azkals players won’t be able to play for the national squad in the Long Teng Cup in September.
ABS-CBN’s Dyan Castillejo reported that Filipino-Europeans Neil Etherdige, Rob Gier, Jerry Lucena, Paul Mulders and Stephan Schrock will be missing the event that is due to take place in Taiwan.
Some of the players are unavailable in September due to commitments with their respective ball clubs in Europe.
“Sorry I won’t be able to make the long teng cup I’m sure that the team will do great! Will be supporting them all the way,” said Etheridge through Twitter.
The Long Teng Cup is not listed in the coordinated FIFA international match calendar, which is why the football clubs are not compelled to release the players.
Gier, meanwhile, chose to stay close with his wife, who is due to give birth.
“Because of the imminent arrival of my baby girl I will not be taking part in the Long Teng Cup. This does not mean that I won’t be taking part in future matches and I look forward to meeting up with the guys again very soon. I hope you all understand that it is an important time for me to be at home,” he said through his Facebook account.
Filipino-British siblings Phil and James Younghusband, meanwhile, will be around to provide the needed boost for the Azkals.
They already began training with the rest of the Azkals at the Alabang Country club on Tuesday.
“Good to be back on team, good to see the same old faces. Good as well to get back in training,” said James.
Joining them is 23-year-old Filipino-German recruit Roland Mueller, second choice goalkeeper of German second division squad Duisburg.
Filipino-Dutch Jason de Jong and Filipino-German Manny Ott will join the Azkals as well. Published in ABS-CBN News.