THE rising football superstar of Cebu, Paolo Pascual, showed positive signs of making it to the pool of players who will compose either the senior team or the Under-23 squad of the Philippine National Football team.
The official announcement of the final list will be released today but Azkals team manager Dan Palami already confirmed that the remaining 13 hopefuls are part of the training pool.
“The pool of players are already considered as part of the team,” Palami said.
The Azkals coaching staff required the players to go through a series of practice games and trainings while waiting for the final list.
“Paolo is performing well. He is training with other goal keepers and he will train with the national team as well,” he added.
Only two goalkeepers will be sent to play for the upcoming match by the Philippine team against Mongolia and Neil Etheridge had already confirmed his presence.
They will announce today who the other keeper will be.
ABS-CBN will be the official broadcasting partner of the AFC Cup game in Bacolod this Feb. 9.
Meanwhile, while waiting for the final results of the tryout, Pascual received an offer to play with the Global FC.
Global FC is a team under the APC Global Incorporated, which actively participates in the premier football leagues in the Philippines such as the United Football League.
“He is young, trainable and has a good work ethic,” said Franco Lorenzo, team manager of Global FC. Lorenzo founded the team with Palami.
They first noticed Pascual when the Cebuano became part of their training pool, who
played for the Under-19 Asian Qualifiers in China in 2009 when he was still 17.
Lorenzo said he admired Pascual’s enthusiasm and passion for football and his
willingness made him throw the offer to the aspiring professional football player.
Pascual said he has not confirmed it yet. “I am is still weighing my options regarding the offer to play for Global FC. I still need to consult my parents,” said Pascual.
Lorenzo offered him a monthly allowance and a slot in the trainings for the Under-23 team of Global FC.
“I’m not forcing him because I know he still has obligations in Cebu and he still has to pursue his education but this is a good chance towards achieving his dream,” Lorenzo said.
The young player is overwhelmed by the response of other football teams to his performance.
“I feel so happy. It’s a good team with good players,” said Pascual.
Lorenzo asked Pascual to watch the championship game today of the Global FC against the Army Team so that he will get to know the players and observe them.
He already included Pascual in the list of players for the team’s next game.
“There are a lot of options. I could go to school here and and train at the same time or I could go back to Cebu and come back whenever they have trainings for the under 23 but my priority would be playing for the Azkals,” Pascual said.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on January 22, 2011.