The preparations of the Ceres Football Club for the 2014 AFC President's Cup on May 1 to 11 include bringing into the team players who can beef up key positions, head coach Ali Bernard Rojas said yesterday.
At the signing ceremony for Filipino-German football player Patrick Reichelt, a mainstay of the national senior team, Azkals, Rojas said they are also targeting the No. 1 spot in the United Football League second division, another reason why they are fortifying their lineup with foreign and Fil-foreign players.
But this does not mean that homegrown talents will be overlooked as Rojas assured that the present core of the team, with several top-notch local players, is already good.
“If you want a strong team, you need to have substitutes who can play like the first eleven. But more than the skills, we want professionalism,” Roxas said, stressing that having the right attitude will assure a player of a long stay with Ceres.
He added that “Ceres is different from other clubs. Our players know that there is no superstar in the team. Everyone is treated the same.”
He said they are preparing the team for the future and they want to make sure that they field a team that can reach the finals and win the championship.
Putting together a formidable Ceres FC does not also mean disregarding the commitment to support the Ceres – La Salle collegiate squad, team manager and Leo Rey Yanson said.
He said the Ceres – La Salle team that will represent the region in the national PRISAA in Davao this April, has its own coaching staff and players and receives the full support of the management.
After several years of investing his time and resources into football development in Negros Occidental, Yanson said he is happy to see Ceres FC achieving a lot in the span of three years.
“Everybody’s dream is to be the best in the country and in Asia. We may have achieved a lot but we will not stop,” Yanson said, referring to the back-to-back title of Ceres FC in the PFF-Smart National Club Championship that gave the team the ticket to represent the country in the AFC President’s Cup
After signing up Reichelt, Yanson said they are expecting five to six more players from either Spain or Germany to join the team in the coming weeks.
He added that football is his passion and his commitment to support the sport in Negros will always remain.*NAB
Visayan Daily Star