With a new football manager on board, the Philippine Azkals national men’s football team is expected to step up their preparations for the Asean Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup football tournament.
The Azkals are expected to become better with multi-titled international football manager Sven-Goran Eriksson calling the shots.
This is what is expected of Eriksson, who guided England to a pair of World Cup appearances, when he comes aboard as the Azkals mentor this November.
“I think that we were able to agree that the Philippines is a good bet for his time and effort,” said team manager Dan Palami.
Palami announced last Saturday that Eriksson will handle the Azkals during the launch of the AFF-Suzuki Cup Trophy Tour at the World Trade Center in Pasay City.
With Palami during the announcement were Suzuki Philippines Inc. General Manager for Automobile Shuzo Hoshikura and some of the players led by Stephan Schrock.
As a football manager, Eriksson won eighteen trophies with a variety of league clubs in Sweden, Portugal and Italy, between 1979 and 2000, and became the first manager to win league-and-cup doubles in three countries.
He later managed the national teams of England, Mexico and the Ivory Coast, as well as two clubs in England.
So far, Eriksson has worked in ten countries, including Sweden, Portugal, Italy, England, Mexico, Ivory Coast, Thailand, United Arab Emirates and China.
He will handle the Philippine national team on a six-month contract and will work with Scott Cooper in molding the squad.
Cooper had been interim coach following the resignation of Terry Butcher last August. Cooper himself suggested Eriksson as a candidate for the position.
Eriksson and Cooper worked together at Leicester between 2010 and 2011.
Eriksson guided Benfica to three Portuguese Primeira Liga titles in Portugal and Lazio to the Italian Serie A championship.