AN elated Philippine national football team coach Michael Weiss said the Azkals will be at full strength when they play Indonesia as part of a series of friendly matches against their Southeast Asian neighbors.
The Azkals take on the Indonesians on June 5 at the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila or at the Panaad stadium in Bacolod City, after facing Malaysia in Kuala Lumpur on May 1.
Philippine Football Federation president Nonong Araneta said the Azkals will also possibly meet Thailand or a Middle East country on June 12.
“I expect some fantastic games, but these are build-up matches for the Suzuki Cup. This is to study our opponents, we need to make a test here and there to try to do something and also to win because we will be with the strongest team,” said Weiss, who is looking ahead at the friendly matches in June.
However, he noted that the Azkals may not be at full strength against Malaysia “because some of the pros are arriving a little bit later, but we will have a very good team and something to look forward to.”
He said the Azkals will begin training next week because the players have commitments with the UFL clubs this week. Weiss added that the main preparation will be the camp from May 21 to 28 in Bacolod.
Araneta earlier told the Manila Standard that the Azkals’ best players from Europe will be available for the matches against Indonesia and possibly against Thailand or a Middle East country.
(Published in the Manila Standard Today newspaper on /2012/April/25)