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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Relegation fears spur action

Relegation fears spur action


Cambodian Premier League teams Post Tel Club and Phouchung Neak are dug deep in the relegation zone although both sides are moving to break out

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Khemara Keila’s Sophal Odom (left) skips past a challenge from Post Tel’s Pin Pheara (right) during their game June 7.

Yem Vannak looks to recruit well

As the mid season approaches, Post Tel Club coach Yem Vannak is looking to bolster his squad with new strikers and midfielders to help lift his team out of the drop zone. Post Tel have only won one game and lost five in the Cambodian Premier League (CPL).

"I am looking for players ahead of the midseason transfer [window]," Yem Vannak stated, referring to the month-long period starting July 7 in which CPL teams are allowed to sign a maximum of three players, and only one from abroad, as specified by the football federation.

"I need to change some players," the coach remarked. "My [current] players have not been good enough, and we are going to work on that by the mid-season."

Yem Vannak rued the chances missed by his players to finish off teams and also lamented his defenders' poor showings in some games played so far. "We always create chances, but my attackers fail to take them, and we get punished for that," he noted.  "Our defenders, too, have not been on top of their games. They fail to clear their lines when we are under pressure, and this has cost us games."

The coach confirmed that he has already targeted individuals to beef up his side for the second half of the season, but declined to disclose names in fear of other teams competing for the signatures.

Photo by: NICK SELLS

Phouchung Neak’s Heng Sokly (right) fires a weak effort easily saved by Kirivong Sok Sen Chey keeper Kem Makara (centre) during their CPL match at Olympic Stadium June 13.

Solomon mines out navy talent

Cambodian navy side Phouchung Neak have enlisted the help of coach Solomon Demagudu to rescue them from relegation. The Nigerian-born coach and former Post Tel defender was called up by team manager Chay Sichouen to provide technical and tactical support for the team. It is hoped coach Demagudu's installation will help to improve the abysmal form of the side, who have obtained just a single point from seven CPL matches and remain rooted to the bottom of the 10-team league.

"We need to improve our game to survive the drop," affirmed Chay Sichouen. "We have asked coach Solomon to come and help us out, as our local coach Chay Sangha cannot handle the team alone."

Meanwhile Demagudu, who lost his first game in charge 2-1 to the high-flying Kirivong Sok Sen Chey, is confident that he will be able to face the challenge. "I am not under pressure to deliver," said the former coach of Cambodian sides Camafric and Samnang Development FC.

"I hope to take the team to a mid-table finish," stated Demagudu. "We are in a difficult position, no doubt, but I am optimistic of changing the fortune of the team by the end of the season." Demagudu has identified a problem in the attitude of the players. "The main problem is discipline," he claimed. "I have observed that the players don't train enough. In fact they don't come to training [at all] and only report on match day.

"The players dictate what to do to the coaches and management, which is wrong, and I am going to try to change that."  

AFG helps develop Cambodian youths

Asia Football Group (AFG) based in Singapore are organizing a soccer camp for children aged between 4 and 16, to be held at Northbridge International school July 23-24.

AFG Director Jimmy Beh visited Cambodia Monday to inspect facilities.

"We want to promote sports in Cambodia, especially soccer," Jimmy Beh said. "We have seen that the people of Cambodia like football and so we want to improve their skills. We will be training the kids [using an] international soccer method, which is famous worldwide as the best method in soccer skill development." 

The director, who was accompanied by AFG marketing manager Ray Yee Pin, also visited some schools and held talks with Cambodian officials for possible investment in sport in Cambodia. "We hope that our coming to Cambodia will open new doors for future initiatives," enthused Ray Yee Pin. "Cambodia has a high potential and the talents here are amazing, which we hope to develop."



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