MANILA, Philippines - The Philippine Football Federation will name Michael Weiss’ replacement as head coach of the Azkals within the next two weeks as the Pinoy booters kick off their preparations for the Asian Football Confederation Challenge Cup.
“We hope to have a choice and finalize the appointment by end of January so that by first week of February, he’s already here to preside over the training,” PFF president Nonong Araneta told The STAR yesterday.
The PFF had dismissed Weiss, the Azkals’ chief tactician from 2011-13, as it sets forth a reorganization of the coaching staff.
Araneta said they have shortlisted five candidates for the vacant post, coming from all over the world. He declined to give names but mentioned that some are coaches of national teams, some are assistant coaches of national sides, and some have playing experiences in top-flight leagues La Liga and Bundesliga.
“Communications are already being sent to the candidate to arrange interviews. Some of them even want to come over to do the interviews here and see the team,” he said.
While the search for a new coach is ongoing, assistant Diding Cabalida has been tapped to handle the initial phase of training.
According to Araneta, the PFF is making arrangements with the United Football League to facilitate the release of Azkals players for initially a once-a-week training session.
The PFF chief said the Azkals will play their first match in March during the International Football Federation (Fifa) international dates.
“We’re arranging a friendly against Azerbaijan in Dubai in March while they are having their scheduled training camp there,” he said.