April 14, 2024

Philippine Men’s National Football Team coach Tom Saintfiet calls up 34 players for camp

Philippine Men’s National Football Team coach Tom Saintfiet calls up 34 players for camp
There's a lot of changes going on with the Philippine Men's National Football Team, such as doing away with the Azkals moniker. | Photo (c) Paolo del Rosario

New Philippine Men's National Football Team head coach Tom Saintfiet has called on 34 players to participate in a training camp.

The coaching change and the camp call-up came just less than a month before the second window of the 2026 FIFA World Cup and 2027 AFC Asian Cup joint qualifiers.

Among the experienced players are Kevin Ingreso, Justin Baas, Audie Menzi, Jesus Milleza, and Daisuke Sato, who already participated in the first window of the qualifiers back in November.

[ALSO READ: Neil Etheridge leads the Azkals’ stacked 26-man roster for FIFA World Cup qualifiers]


It remains to be seen how this camp will affect the final lineup for the March window of the qualifiers. The Philippines will be taking on Iraq in home and away games next month. First, the Filipinos will be flying to Basra to compete on March 21 before welcoming the Iraqis at the Rizal Memorial Stadium on March 26.

The Philippines is currently third in Group F with a 2-0 loss to Vietnam and a 1-1 draw against Indonesia at home. The top two teams in each group will proceed to the third round of the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers and earn a direct berth to the Asian Cup. The third and fourth teams will compete in the third round of the Asian Cup qualifiers.

It's only one of many changes with the men's football team, after they did away with the Azkals moniker.

[ALSO READ: ‘Served its purpose’: PFF to move on from Azkals monicker after announcing new head coach]

The Philippine Men’s National Football Team camp's training session will be held on Friday, March 1, 2024, at 4:00 p.m. at the Rizal Memorial Stadium. It will be open for both the fans and the media.

(With reports from Paolo del Rosario)