Friday, January 24, 2014

Sam on his foreign contingent

Phnom Penh Crown head coach Sam Schweingruber (pictured above with new signing Rafael Oliveira) gave his views on his contingent of 5 foreign players earlier this week. “I’m relieved to have finally signed five players, it was a long process, looking at various options, trying out different players, exploring the market of what’s available, considering hundreds of emails and CVs. I’m happy with what we’ve ended up signing, good for us to wait until a week before the games start to finalise these contracts. I’m confident having five strong players like this will create the right competitive environment in training and pushing everybody to the highest level and make our team competitive for the championship.”

Sam then spoke about each of his 5 foreign players: “Tony (Odion Obadin) – we know all about him, he played with us last season and was outstanding. I hope he will continue, in fact I believe he can get better, we are working on improving his leadership so he can become even more important to us.
George (George Bisan) has obviously proved he can find the net in Cambodia, he knows the environment, he knows how things work and if he’s 100% switched on, he can be a real handful for any defence. In the past he’s been a bit inconsistent, losing focus at times, but the competition we have in the team will push him and if he wants to play, he will have to be at his best all the time.”

For the 3 new players, who signed on earlier this week: “First is Ben (Newton Katanha), who is our most experienced and mature target striker. We’re looking at him scoring a lot of goals, being the experienced threat up front that we want. I think he will work hard, he has pace, is good with the ball, and has international experience. He will be a mentor to younger players in our team, bringing top-level experience, sharing and helping others on and off the pitch. Our oldest player, so not sure he will play every single game, it depends on fitness and form, but it’s good to have strong back-up in every department of the team.
Rafael (Rafael Oliveira) - I think we have a very creative player, at 25 he’s also very experienced, playing in Vietnam and Brazil. Very good with the ball, both feet, an eye for his teammates, good delivery and with instincts as we saw last weekend, scoring 2 goals with something special, a bit of magic and being in the right place at the right time. Our job will be to ensure both of these players fit into our system, when we have the ball and when we don’t. I’m very excited to see both of these players and to see how much better they will get when they get used to our team and building relationships with our existing players.
Jeongho (Jeong Ho Kim) has been with us for a few weeks and he has shown good signs, very strong, good technique and has improved his fitness. He has not played enough competitive football for the past year. So we’ll have to see how quickly he gets up to speed. With his background and skill and two good feet, he could develop into an important squad player – as he can play different positions, including centre-back and holding midfielder.
It’s a new situation for me having more than just one or two good foreign players. We now have five, all five are of a good level, the selection headache will be a good one, we can try some rotation here and there and there will be good healthy competition for places. We now have a strong squad and the firepower up front from our foreign players will help us to challenge for the championship.”

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Andy, PPCrown is lucky to have such a good squad, bolstered by high-quality experienced foreigners....but Im Sarath no 16 in Sihanoukville Hun Sen Cup team is the best Cambodian player I've seen since Sokumpheak at his best.