THE Philippine Boys Under-16 (U16) team, boosted by a former Barcelona FC recruit, a Filipino French player and a Fil-American youngster will open their campaign in the Asean U16 tournament against host Indonesia on July 29 at Surabaya, Indonesia.
Match fixtures for Philippines: July 29 - Philippines vs Indonesia; July 31-Philippines vs Cambodia; August 2 - Philippines vs Myanmar; August 4 -Philippines vs Vietnam; August 6 - Philippines vs Timor Leste; August 9 Semis; August 11 Finals
The Filipinos are in Group A of the two-week tournament organized by the ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) with Vietnam, Myanmar, Cambodia, Indonesia, and Timor Leste.
Former Barcelona FC recruit Sandro Reyes will definitely add strength to the RP U16 team of Japanese coach Reiji Hirata. Reyes played for the Barcelona youth team as a youngster but has come back to study and live here the Philippines.
He will also get help from Fil-American Thomas McDermott, whose mom trace her roots from Cebu. Filipino French Antoine Ortega Boutain will also bolster their line-up against our ASEAN neighbors.
Mindanao is represented by three fast rising footballers, Josh Ralph Gojol Go of Corpus Christi School here in Cagayan de Oro, Resty Llyod Dela Cruz of Davao, and Franc John Delos Santos Barrera of Basilan City now playing for San Beda University in Manila.
Other members of the team are Jerome Ang Estabillo-FEU-Floridablanca, Pampanga, Raphaelle Gionne Aquino-La Salle Greenhills-San Juan, Sirius Emory Regondola Cabanlet-Don Bosco Technical Institute Makati (Taguig), Jetrick Piolo Fabrigas-Olongapo Natiobnal High School, Paolo Rafael Galan Fernandez-La Salle Greenhills, and RJ Vincent Jaya-on Jarandillo-Barotac Nuevo.
Completing the line-up are Liam Reyes Lampayan- De La Salle Zobel, Christian Joseph Durano Lumapas-SHS-Ateneo de Cebu, Jan Meir Vittali Mitra- De La Salle Zobel, Jaime Rosquillo Domingo-Iloilo, Fernando Antonio Roxas, Konrad Keim Espesor Sollorin-Iloilo, Florenz Carlos Tacardon Claret School QC, James Carl Garcia Tuazon-Iloilo-CPU, Khent Brian Bermejo Valenzuela-iloilo CPU, Renard Robert Lopez Yu Xavier School.
Assisting coach Reiji Hirata are PFF Technical Director Ariston Caslib and Coaching Education Head Marlon Maro.
They are on their last phase of their training in the PFF National Training Center in Carmona, Cavite and will travel to Surabaya, Indonesia on July 27.