Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Numero Trois

PPCFC's latest signing, French-Khmer midfielder Dani Kouch
With the new season fast approaching, Phnom Penh Crown head coach Sam Schweingruber is a busy man. Yesterday, he was coaching the Cambodia U-15 girls team as well as running Crown's first Festival of Football for young children, and today he's heading to Sochi in Russia for a prestigious awards ceremony where his SALT Academy is up for the NGO of the Year accolade. And just around the corner, his new Crown team will begin their Hun Sen Cup and Metfone C-League season. The last two weeks have been pretty frantic for the newly-appointed coach in trying to knit together a brand new line-up. Trials for new faces was a success in that a handful of players have joined the club, but now the hard work begins in earnest, to gel the new arrivals and the existing players into a team unit, capable of offering up a challenge expected of one of the country's very best clubs. With two French-Khmer players already signed up, Sam was pleased to add a third, Dani Kouch, to his team roster before heading for Russia. A member of the Khmer-Europe team that toured here and Thailand recently, alongwith his teammates Thierry Bin and Boris Kok, Dani impressed the Crown coach during the recent trials and has now put pen to paper for the forthcoming season. Born in Nantes of Cambodian parents, 22-year-old Dani's previous experience at full-back or in midfield has been with Le Roche Vendee, FC Erde Atlantic, FC Montaigu and Nantes Mellinet, as well as playing futsal to a high level including trials for the French U-21 Futsal team. Sam's view of his new signing: "He's small, but aggressive and with excellent technique and close ball control (courtesy of his futsal experience), with the ability to read the game and change its rhythm. He's a great addition to our midfield options." Crown will continue their pre-season preparation, which will include two weeks in Vietnam, with Bouy Dary responsible for training in Sam's absence for the next few days.

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