Schrock, Etheridge happy to be back with the Azkals
ABS-CBN Sports on Jun 02, 2015 05:31 PM
Fans will surely enjoy seeing Schrocky back on the pitch for the Azkals (Associated Press Images)
Following over a year of absence, Fil-German midfielder Stephan Schrock is back in the Philippines and back with the Azkals as they get ready to compete in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers, which kicks off against Bahrain at the Philippine Sports Stadium on Thursday, June 11.
Schrock had been away from the Azkals because of a disagreement with head coach Thomas Dooley, but the two have since patched things up, and “Schrocky” now finds himself part of the 23-man lineup headed to the World Cup Qualifiers.
The 28 year old Schrock declined to comment on the past, and simply said that he was happy to be back on the national team.
Also making his return to the lineup is keeper Neil Etheridge, who after almost a year away from the squad, says that he’s excited to be on the team once again.
Azkals star striker Phil Younghusband on the other hand, has a bit of a reason to be lonely, as his brother James won’t be on the team with him. The Fil-Brit star says that he’s always used to having his brother with him on the pitch, but understands that that’s the way the game goes.
The 23-man squad set to bear the country’s colors includes a majority of former Azkals, as well as a handful of fresh, new recruits from England, Australia, Austria, and Germany, including 19 year old Luke Woodland who’s also expressed his excitement to be running with the Azkals.
The Azkals find themselves in arguably one of the more difficult groups in the Qualifiers, as they will be facing off against the likes of Bahrain, North Korea, Uzbekistan, and Yemen, which means that the team will need to level up in practice during the coming days.
The World Cup Qualifiers kicks off as the Azkals meet Bahrain on the 11th of June right here on home soil. The team heads to Qatar just a day later to prepare for their matchup against Yemen.
Via Dyan Castillejo, ABS-CBN News