MANILA, Philippines – The official Azkals website announced its 22-man lineup for the prestigious 2012 Suzuki Cup Friday afternoon, November 23, a day before their opening game.
On Tuesday, November 20, a group of 22 players from the men’s Philippine football team flew to Bangkok, Thailand but it was not the official roster.
Over the next few days, the 22 were joined by overseas players Fil-Danish Jerry Lucena and Dennis Cagara, Fil-Dutch Paul Mulders, and Fil-Spanish Angel Guirado.
Fil-German Roland Muller is also expected to join the team if they make it past the group stages, while Fil-British goalkeeper Neil Etheridge was not cleared by his club to play in the tournament.
From the 27, the team’s management dropped 5 players — Ian Araneta, Joshua Beloya, Nestorio Margarse, Misagh Bahadoran and Anto Gonzales — in deciding its final roster of 22.
The final list that will represent the Philippines is pictured below, as it appeared on the Azkals’ website:
The tournament, which gathers the top 8 teams in Southeast Asia, is the most competitive in the region.
In 2010, the Philippine Azkals made history when they reached the semi-finals for the first time, humbling defending champions Vietnam 2-0 along the way.
The Azkals are set to face a talented Thailand squad on Saturday, November 24, before playing Southeast Asia’s powerhouse Vietnam on Tuesday, November 27, and Myanmar on Friday, November 30. – Rappler.com