MIKE Ott is the latest player from United City FC to get a call-up for the Philippine Azkals following withdrawals by a few members of the senior national team.
The Philippines Football League champions announced Ott’s inclusion in the Azkals lineup for the joint 2022 Fifa World Cup and 2023 AFC Asian Cup qualifiers on Friday.
Ott played for the Azkals during the same qualification competition in 2019 in a loss to Syria in Bacolod City.
The Azkals also announced on Thursday that newly-signed UCFC player Justin Baas has also been called up, joining teammates Stephan Schrock and Mark Hartmann in the national team.
The call-up comes after Gerrit Holtmann and Raphael Obermair decided not to push through with their participation in the Azkals for the meantime for varying reasons.
The inclusion of Ott and Baas also means they will not be joining UCFC’s own training camp in Dubai in preparation for the AFC Champions League to be played in Uzbekistan.
Ott and Baas will also have to fly to Uzbekistan immediately after the Azkals’ last match of the qualifiers against China on June 15.
“This is not ideal for our own preparations for the AFC Champions League, but sometimes we are not in charge of a certain situation, and we all have to come together and make the best of it,” said UCFC chief Eric Gottschalk.
“We expect them to be match fit and ready to go when they join our squad on 17 June in Uzbekistan, and we shall have ample time to find our starting lineup for our first game.”