By JONAS TERRADO
Thirty players have been called up to be part of the Philippine Azkals’ training pool ahead of the 2023 AFC Asian Cup Qualifiers slated June 8 to 14 in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.
German Bundesliga standout Gerrit Holtmann along with veterans Neil Etheridge and Stephan Schrock were among those named by management to be part of the preparations that will be handled by returning coach Thomas Dooley.
Among the veterans on the list are brothers Mike and Manny Ott, Amani Aguinaldo, OJ Porteria, Patrick Reichelt, Mark Hartmann, Daisuke Sato, Carli de Murga, Dennis Villanueva and Kenshiro Daniels.
Past and present members of the national U-23 squad in Oliver Bias, Sandro Reyes, Oskari Kekkonen, Anthony Pinthus, Dennis Chung, Ivan Ouano, Jaime Rosquillo, Quincy Kammeraad and Miguel Mendoza were also invited to take part in the camp.
Wrapping up the list are naturalized player Bienvenido Maranon, Kevin Hansen, Jefferson Tabinas, Jesse Curran, Jhan-Jhan Melliza and Matthew Nierras.
The list, however, is no indication that it will be the Azkals’ final squad for the last phase of the continental qualifiers since some players may end up unavailable for various reasons.
Dooley is back for his second tour of duty as Azkals coach and will be tasked to steer the Philippines to a spot in next year’s Asian Cup.
The Azkals are in Group B with Palestine, Yemen and host Mongolia.