AZKALS coach Hans Michael Weiss is considering three criteria and has three days to decide which three to scratch from the list and finalize his lineup for the Asean Football Federation Suzuki Cup kicking off on Saturday.
The Philippine men’s football team arrived in Bangkok on Tuesday, and from 25, the team will be trimmed to 22 a day before the tournament kickoff.
The German mentor said he is considering three factors in choosing the players, who will try to at least replicate the Azkals’ unprecedented semifinal finish in the 2010 edition of the meet.
“The criteria are what have they contributed to the success of the team in the past and social interaction, and of course, who’s currently in the best shape.”
“There are good players, but they don’t fit in the group sometimes. Sometimes even the not-so-skilled players can do wonders,” added Weiss, who started with a pool of 35.
Filipino-foreign standouts Dennis Cagara, Jerry Lucena, and Paul Mulders, who have all been cleared to play by their club teams at the last minute, are considered shoo-ins for the squad.
After criticizing their “commitment issues” in the past, Weiss said the Younghusband brothers are also back on track and will likely regain their usual spots in the starting XI.
“I believe James and Phil are now back in the shape where we can say they’re on a high level. I’ve given them a program and I think they’ve done their homework.”
The Azkals capped their Philippine preparations with a 1-0 win over Singapore in their friendly last week and will finalize their buildup in Thailand’s capital city in the next four days.