Doha, Qatar— Philippine Azkals coach Thomas Dooley is already moving on with midfielder Manny Ott’s injury.
While he can’t emphasize enough the importance of Ott’s in the line-up, Dooley says he has already a plan to offset the latest injury woes to hit the Azkals.
“You try to find ways, solutions to make it right. We have players who, when you talk to them personally, think they can play better and that they should play. This is their chance to show why they should play,” Dooley says.
Ott became the latest Azkals to suffer an injury when he partially tore his MCL on his right knee during a team practice two days ago.
“We can’t decide 2-3 days before the game. I’ll make a decision a night before. I already something on my mind but i have to think it over,” Dooley said on the possible changes in Azkals’ line-up.
He added he will make the final changes on game day.
The Azkals are already missing striker Javier Patiño, Misagh Bahadoran, Amani Aguinaldo, Luke Woodland, Camelo Tacusalme and Kenshiro Daniels due to various injuries.
Dooley says the return match against Yemen is very important and the Azkals know that a historic spot in the Asian Cup is within reach with a good result.
“It is a very important game obviously for all of us. If they gonna win that makes it huge for our goal to qualify in the Asian Cup. If we settle for a draw, we are still in a good position to qualify. We have two chances to score the necessary points to qualify,” Dooley explains.
While Ott’s injury will need a big adjustment, Dooley is happy with the new faces in the team especially Stallion Laguna FC’s Jhan Jhan Melliza and Sean Kane of JP Voltes Marikina FC.
“We have new players here who jumped into out training looking sharp, looking good,” Dooley added.
“We will try to do the best we can and hopefully we have a successful game (against Yemen).
By Erel Cabatbat