Eintracht Frankfurt midfielder Stephan Schrock has been included in Philippines coach Thomas Dooley’s 23-man squad for their upcoming training camp in Bahrain.
Schrock, who has missed the Azkals’ last three friendlies due to club commitments, is widely regarded as one of their most-important players and has been tipped to play a key role in their bid to win this month’s AFC Challenge Cup.
Therefore, it will come as a real boost that he will be joining his compatriots as Philippines finalise their preparations for the tournament with an 11-day camp in Bahrain, which concludes just four days before their opening Group B game against Afghanistan.
Schrock is one of four overseas-based players included in Dooley’s roster; the others being Esbjerg anchorman Jerry Lucena, and midfielders Paul Mulders and Martin Steuble of SC Cambuur and Wil respectively.
All-time top scorer Phil Younghusband returns to the squad after missing last month’s friendly with Malaysia due to injury, and is joined by Loyola Meralco Sparks team-mates James Younghusband and Simon Greatwich.
Current United Football League leaders Global will contribute four of their players, including captain Jason De Jong and winger Misagh Bahadoran, while Kaya stars Chris Greatwich, OJ Porteria and Anton Del Rosario have all been given the nod.
The Azkals will be without Fulham goalkeeper Neil Etheridge and Servette counterpart Roland Muller, although Dooley has unearthed a more-than-capable deputy in Green Archers United custodian Patrick Deyto, who has starred in both his recent appearances against Malaysia.
Four players that were called up for the recent friendly against Harimau Malaya will not travel to Bahrain, namely Eduard Sacapano, Charley Pettys, Roxy Dorlas and Jovin Bedic.
Goalkeepers: Patrick Deyto (Green Archers United), Nick O’Donnell (Kaya)
Defenders: Carli de Murga (Ceres-La Salle), Amani Aguinaldo (Global), Simone Rota (Stallion FC), Anton Del Rosario (Kaya)
Midfielders: Simon Greatwich, James Younghusband (both Loyola Meralco Sparks), Daisuke Sato, Jason De Jong, Misagh Bahadoran, Curt Dizon (all Global), Jerry Lucena (Esbjerg), Martin Steuble (Wil), Paul Mulders (SC Cambuur), Chris Greatwich, Kenshiro Daniels, OJ Porteria (all Kaya), Stephan Schrock (Eintracht Frankfurt), Patrick Reichelt (Ceres-La Salle)
Forwards: Phil Younghusband (Loyola Meralco Sparks), Ruben Doctora (Stallion FC), Nate Burkey (Pachanga Diliman)