The Philippine Azkals will leave no stone unturned in preparing for two major tournaments in the next eight months.
Speaking at the Business of Football-Philippines conference at New World Hotel in Makati Friday, Azkals manager Dan Palami said they have already lined up training camps for the buildup for the AFF Suzuki Cup in November and the AFC Asian Cup in January.
Members of the national side will remain tied up with their clubs for the next three months before the Azkals converge in September for a camp in Bahrain. Palami said the Azkals would play a club team in Manama on Sept. 7 before taking on the Bahrain national team four days later.
For the October international window, the Azkals boss said he is closely coordinating with the Philippine Football Federation in setting up a friendly match against a team that just played in the World Cup, preferably Australia. Another camp in the Middle East is scheduled on the last week of the year before the Azkals travel to Dubai for their Jan. 7 match against South Korea.
“We will prepare the best way we can,” said Palami. “These are two important tournament that we’ve been looking forward to for quite some time.”
The Azkals are also identifying Filipinos who were born and raised abroad for possible selection to the team in the future.
The Azkals coaching job remained vacant almost two months after Thomas Dooley’s deal expired last March.
“We are in the final stages of our evaluation and we will be making an announcement on June 14,” Palami said.