Friday, October 28, 2011

National team friendly

selected African eleven to face national team of Cambodia
 This game took place at the main bowl of the Olympic stadium where league matches are regularly being played. Africans playing with various teams in Cambodia premier league CPL all came together to grace this game. The 90 minutes of hard tackle and thrilling game ended 1-1 with Harry leading the striking role.
Harry trying to out paced two players

Harry taking on two Cambodia National players

Harry looking on rolling ball

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

BIDC CUP 2011 held in Cambodia

Top marks to the Burmese

The victorious Myanmar team with their reward, the BIDC Cup
For the 2nd match running, Thet Naing proved to be the match-winner for Myanmar
Well blow me down, Myanmar did it. They beat Thailand 2-1 after extra time in tonight's MRYUIFTBIDC Cup (aka BIDC Cup) and deserved it, just. At the final whistle, their German coach Gerd Zeise expressed his pride at his young team (14 under-19 and six at U-21) and felt they did enough to win, and who's to argue, as his young team went on a lap of honour, hardly believing themselves that they'd won against the tournament favourites. Thailand simply didn't do enough and allowed themselves to be harried and hustled off the ball by the fleet-footed Myanmar players who broke quickly and adopted a shoot on sight policy throughout the game. On twenty minutes, the Burmese youngsters went close three times, posting a warning to the Thai team. But it was the Thai's who drew first blood five minutes before the break when Pakorn Parmpak's inswinging free-kick looked to have found the boot of Wittaya Moonwong though the goal was later awarded to Parmpak himself. Not to be outdone, the Myanmar team repeated the feat, when Ye Ko Oo unleashed a free-kick that travelled all the way through the Thai defence and found Zaw Lin in space at the far post and his touch was true to level the scores three minutes before the interval. In the second period the best opportunities fell to Thailand but Parmpak and then Thitiphan Puangjan both failed to take advantage, and so the game went into extra time. Two more Parmpak chances went begging, one of them hitting the foot of the post, before Myanmar sent their supporters into raptures two minutes into the second half of extra time. A sweet and swift passing move saw Nay Lin Tun send over an inviting low cross which Thet Naing tapped in and went off like a rocket to celebrate. Despite a series of Thailand free-kicks that failed to find the target, the Myanmar skipper David Htan smacked a 25 yard free-kick against the cross-bar and that was it, as the Myanmar team celebrated their unexpected success with hugs and flag-waving, collecting the BIDC Cup (and $20,000) and earned the respect from everyone who watched this tournament. Parmpak picked up the golden boot award but will be kicking himself that he didn't make more of a difference in the final when he had the opportunities.
Myanmar were out to prove a point against their higher-rated opponents
Thailand went into the match as hot favourites, and believed it themselves
Golden Boot award winner with 5 goals, Thailand's Pakorn Parmpak
The Myanmar section of the crowd that kept up the noise level throughout the game
Winning coach Gerd Zeise (left) with FFC President Sao Sokha after the presentations

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Footballers coming home?

Photo by: Photo Supplied
Cambodian-German Chhunly Pagenberg smiles in his 1. FC Nuremburg shirt. The midfielder would be ‘happy’ to play for Cambodia.

The secret to success for Cambodia’s national football team could well be in scouting talent based further afield. While domestic players, especially the younger crop, are constantly improving in general standard, some notable individuals born on foreign soil with Cambodian heritage offer an intriguing way to boost the first team.

Many countries in the region, such as Vietnam, Indonesia and the Philippines, have called up players living abroad, particularly in Europe, to help their national teams in major events.

Football Federation of Cambodia President revealed to the Post that they are eager to see the national team strengthened in the pursuit of glory.

“We welcome any players of Cambodian blood to help the national team and we will always try to facilitate them,” he said.

“But what is important for the Federation as well as the head coach, is to see their abilities first before making any decision.”

May Tola, Deputy General Secretary and spokesman for the FFC, added: “We can evaluate them if we see their playing in the stand or by DVD. We cannot call them without seeing anything about them.”

Three players have caught the eye after scouring the football globe with the hope that the Federation and national team coaching staff here take note for selection consideration.

Chhunly Pagenburg
Cambodian-German striker Chhunly Pagenburg, 24, was born in the Bavarian city of Nuremberg and enrolled with SB Phönix Nürnberg’s youth team in 1998, before playing for the youth sides of SpVgg Greuther Fürth and 1. FC Nuremberg.

Chhunly progressed to feature in the senior squad of German club Rot-Weib Erfurt and on July 1 this year, he signed with SV Eintracht Trier 05 of Regionalliga West division, the fourth tier of the German league.

However, the greatest accomplishment of his club career so far was a stint with the first team of Bundesliga outfit 1. FC Nuremberg during the 2006-07 season, during which he scored once from 12 appearances. Chhunly also grabbed a goal during Nuremberg’s triumphant DFB Pokal Cup run of 2007.

Chhunly is no stranger to international football, having enjoyed call ups for the U19 and U20 German national teams during 2004 and 2005. In 2004, the U19 side reached the semifinals of the European Championships, with Chhunly played five times and finding the net once.

With the door seemingly closed now for the German team, Chhunly has turned his sights on a representing the Kingdom.

“I am so happy if I have chance to play for the Cambodian team, where my mother was born. It’s my great honour. But I don’t know if it is possible because I don’t have Cambodia passport,” Chhunly Pagenburg told the Post in an email correspondence.

Davy Armstrong
Photo by: Photo Supplied
Colorado born 19-year-old Davy Armstrong, who has a Cambodian father, stands with Colorado Rapids Head Coach Gary Smith after signing for the Major League Soccer club in August last year.
Nineteen-year-old Davy Armstrong was born in Aurora, Colorado, to a Cambodian father who emigrated to the US during the Vietnam War. Davy began playing football whilst attending Rangeview High School and was honoured as best player during the 2008 Denver Post All-Colorado tournament.

He joined Major League Soccer club, the Colorado Rapids, youth system in 2007, making numerous appearances with the U17 and U18 squad. On August 16 last year, Davy bypassed college to become the first homegrown player (from Colorado) to join the senior team of the Rapids.

Three months after this historic signing, the Rapids captured their inaugural MLS title, although Davy was kept on the reserves list throughout. The young midfielder finally got some pitch team just a few weeks ago, when he came on as a substitute during their 3-1 CONCACAF Champions League over hosts Metapan of El Salvador on August 28.

Athleticism clearly runs in the family, as Davy’s father Ri represented the US as a skier at the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid.

Despite having never been to Cambodia, Davy expressed an interest to visit the Kingdom. “My uncle still does an orphan camp down there with all the missionaries. My sisters have gone down and helped out, so I hope to get there someday to do that, too. I really want to go, but I think it might be a while,” told told his local newspaper, the Aurora Sentinel in June.

“Maybe in the winter it would be good because it’s really humid down there and everything, but who knows. It’s extremely hot in the summer. So we’ll see.”

Chan Tolson
Photo by: Photo Supplied
Cambodian footballer Chan Tolson (left) poses for a photo with teammates Liam Slow (centre) and Hamish Davie wearing shirts of Pro Football Australia, a program sponsored by Bolton Wanderers.
Chan Tolson was born in Battambang province in 1990 to an Australian father and Cambodian mother. The family have since relocated to Brisbane, Australia. Prior to taking up football in 2007, Tolson had shown promise as a track sprinter but made the conversion to the beautiful game because he liked its use of multiple skills.

The 21-year-old, who also goes by the name Jackie, is said to excel on either wing and as a forward. After playing for a few local youth teams in Brisbane, he flew round the world last year to join the U20 side of English Premier League club Bolton Wanderers.

Tolson now plays on the U21 team of the Pro Football Australia program, which is funded by Bolton. When contacted by the Post, Tolson revealed his keenness to join the cause in the Kingdom.

“I have some relatives in Cambodia. I have played in England, Wales, and Australia, so I really want chance to play for my home country,” he said by email.

“I am still young. I want to share experiences which I have learned in different countries to develop Cambodian football and create a higher ranking for Cambodia in FIFA,” he added.

Cambodian teams abroad
Work is also being done in creating Cambodian football teams in foreign countries such as France, Belgium, the Netherlands, and the US.

Pen Phat, a celebrated national team striker of the 1960s and 70s, has been trying hard to develop a Cambodian youth team in Paris. Under his leadership, La sélection du Cambodge FRANCE team has held regular training sessions and arranged frequent fixtures.  Their progress can be followed on French language website

In 2004, Pen Phat’s son Stephane made an appearance with the Cambodian national team.

Meanwhile in Washington DC, the Cambodian American Soccer Association was founded last year under the slogan “For the Love of Cambodia”, with the aim of recruiting and training young Cambodian footballers across the US in the hope they will compete internationally in the future, according to their official website,


Albion Striker Says Eagles Coach Can Count On Him Against Guinea

Super Eagles striker, Osaze  Odemwingie, has vowed to reciprocate the confidence coach Samson Siasia has on him by inspiring his team mates to beat their Guinean counterparts hands down on Saturday at the lush Abuja National Stadium

Osaze told Complete Sports after yesterday’s training session that he was overwhelmed by the welcome given him by the coaches when he arrived on Monday and that he had made up his made to take up the challenge given by Siasia to score goals for the Eagles.

“I was given a rousing welcome by the coaches after which I was told to lead the goals rush against the Guineans on Saturday. I have taken up the challenge and I hope to reciprocate the gesture by scoring at least one goal. Yes the coach can count on me to deliver,” the West Brom striker said.

“How else would I repay the confidence the coach has in me other than by scoring and working hard with my team mates to beat the Guineans by as many goals as possible. Beating Guinea is a task that must be done and we are collectively working hard to ensure that we get it done.”

He said scoring an early goal will be the key to breaking any resistance the Guineans would offer, adding that they would work towards doing that to ease the pressure and go ahead to finish the job of qualifying for the Nations Cup in Gabon/ Equatorial Guinea next year.

On whether the 2pm kick off time will not have an adverse effect on the Super Eagles, Osaze stated that one of the reasons why he came early to camp was because he wanted to get used to the hot sun before the match. He added that the weather will not be a problem  ‘because in Europe it is still summer and the weather is warm.’

The former Bendel Insurance FC of Benin City star forward agreed that there will be so much pressure on the team to score an early goal and win the match but pointed out that Nigerians should just continue cheering them until they get the goals, adding that the goals will come.

Reminded that the Guineans who defeated the Eagles in Conakry in the first leg have vowed to stop them again, Osaze was quick to warn that they had fewer chances in that match and scored while the Eagles could not convert several scoring opportunities created.

“In Abuja, it will not be the same because a lot of things have changed in our team and the desire to win and be at the Nations Cup is burning in all of us. There is no hiding place for them on Saturday, we are united to beating them silly,” he stated.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Sovan gets call up

Two Phnom Penh Crown players have made it into Lee Tae-Hoon's Cambodian national squad for the Mekong Region BIDC Cup (aka MRYUIFTBIDC Cup) that kicks-off next Saturday, 8 October. In Sok Sovan (pictured), the South Korean coach has decided to select one of the C-League champions most promising youngsters, who got a few chances in the team at the end of the season and in the AFC President's Cup. The 19-year old is certainly one for the future and has impressed club coach David Booth over the last few weeks. Sovan joined the Crown club as a 14-year-old in 2006 and has played for Cambodia at U-16 age level. He was loaned out to Kompong Cham side Neak Khiev at the start of the season, as they made an unsuccessful attempt to gain promotion into the C-league last term. The other Crown player to make the national squad for the U-21 BIDC tournament is striker Sok Pheng, another who impressed his Crown coach when he was given his chance just after the half-way mark in the C-League campaign. With 7 goals under his belt, he more than repaid the faith shown in him by David Booth and looks set for a good future with the league champions. Sok Pheng was in the full national team squad earlier in the year for the matches against Macau and the Maldives. The striker, who turned 21 today, previously played for the Navy, the Army and Khemara Keila before joining Crown in 2010.

The hosts Cambodia begin their group B games against Laos on Saturday (4pm) and then meet Myanmar on Wednesday 12 October at 5.30pm. The top two teams in each group go onto the semi-finals two days later and the final takes place on Sunday 16 October at 4pm. The three teams in group A are Thailand, Vietnam and Hongxiang FC from China. The winners will get $20,000 in prize money, with the matches being screened on local channel, My TV. For Cambodia, the tournament is all about preparation for the SEA Games, which is played at U-23 age level, and will take place in November. Before that, the team have a friendly match against visiting Nepal on Friday 28 October. Counting themselves a mite unfortunate not to get into the BIDC Cup squad will be three Crown players who've all made an impact of varying degrees this season, goalkeeper Peng Bunchhay and wide-men Suong Virak and Hong Ratana, all of whom make the age qualification

Pheak in the frame

Something we all like to see, Kouch Sokumpheak celebrating another of his goals, this time against Yadanarbon [courtesy of]
A few official AFC photographs taken at the recent AFC President's Cup final stages in Taiwan, all showing our very own number 10, Phnom Penh Crown's Kouch Sokumpheak, in action. Before this season's competition, Sokumpheak appeared twice in previous AFC President's Cup competitions, both for Khemara Keila, back in 2006 and 2007, scoring 4 goals in 7 matches.
Sokumpheak is fending off Yadanarbon's Htoo Aung during Crown's 4-0 group stage success [courtesy of]
Kouch Sokumpheak in motion in the ill-fated final against Taiwan Power with Yu-Lin Chen in hot pursuit [courtesy of]

Football in Cambodia

Map of Cambodia