A squad of 18 NagaWorld players departed from Phnom Penh airport to Singapore yesterday ahead of their 2016 RHB Singapore Cup first round clash with the Philippines’ Global FC tomorrow at Jalan Besar Stadium at 6:30pm.
The two-time Metfone Cambodian League Championship coach Meas Channa has selected three foreign players in his squad for the upcoming tournament: Japan’s Mashiro Fukasawa, South Korea’s Park Yong-jun and Cameroon’s Befolo Privat.
Influential attacking midfielder Sos Suhana and defender Ngoy Srin have been included in the national squad for Sunday’s pre-Asia Cup qualifier friendly against Timor Leste. Cambodia play Chinese Taipei on Wednesday.
Ahead of their trip to Singapore, NagaWorld head coach Meas Channa told the Post yesterday: “After seeing a video clip of Global highlights, I can say they are a very strong team.
“They are unbeaten in the Philippines’ United Football League and are top of their league.” “Global are good at attacking with speed. Their back four is also very strong,” Channa said.
Global are in form, having won all their first four matches in the Philippines’ United Football League, while NagaWorld sit third in the 2016 Metfone Cambodian League table with four wins, two draws and two defeats.
The current UFL leaders were also invited to take part in the tournament in 2015, when they were beaten in the semi-finals 3-1 by then Singapore champions Albirex Niigata.
NagaWorld, by contrast, finished their only previous tournament appearance in 2014 in the first round, losing 5-0 to Singapore side Home United.
Naga’s MCL rivals Phnom Penh Crown, who have made five appearances in the Singapore Cup, have lost in the preliminary round four times, only making the last eight once, in 2009.
Svay Rieng, who have played in the tournament twice, and Boeung Ket, with one appearance, were both knocked out in the preliminary round.
The winner of this match will go on to face Singapore League runners-up Tampines Rovers, a side that includes former Arsenal and Liverpool winger Jermaine Pennant.
Additional reporting by Chhorn Norn