The Philippines is bracing for a tough rematch against Yemen when they meet in Qatar on Tuesday in a third-round match as part of the 2019 AFC Asian Cup Qualifiers.
But making the away tie more complicated for the Philippines is the absence of Fil-German midfielder Manny Ott, who suffered an injury to his medial collateral ligament (MCL).
Ott announced on Twitter that he will have to rest his MCL for the next 6 weeks.
Ott’s presence has been key for the Azkals in the past few games, and his absence means that coach Thomas Dooley will rely on the likes of Kevin Ingreso and Paul Mulders.
The Philippines and Yemen will play at Saoud Bin Abdulrahman Stadium on Tuesday, a month after the Azkals squeezed out a 2-2 draw at Panaad Stadium in Bacolod.
The Azkals are currently on top of Group F with 7 points on 2 wins and a draw, followed by Yemen with 5 points on a win and 2 draws.
The top 2 teams from each group will advance to the tournament proper.
The Azkals, now ranked 123rd in the world, will be led by Fil-English siblings Phil and James Younghusband.
Other members of the 23-man lineup are: Dylan De Bruycker, Carlos De Murga, Dominic Del Rosario, Patrick Deyto, Curt Dizon, Harry Foll, Kevin Ingreso, Sean Patrick Kane, Jesus Joaquin Melliza, Hikaru Minegishi, Paul Mulders, Jim Junior Muñoz, Nicholas O’Donnell, Mike Rigoberto Ott, Stephan Palla, Iain Ramsay, Simone Rota, Daisuke Sato, Dennis Villanueva, and Neil Etheridge.
Last month, the Younghusbands scored the crucial goals force a draw with Yemen.
(For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.)