WA’s State Amateur soccer team will head to Kuala Lumper this Saturday for a weeklong campaign against three Malaysian teams.
Coach Rob Pagnoni will lead a team of 16 players against NPNG FC, Perbadanan Kemajuan Negeri Selangor FC, and Permodalan Negeri Selangor Berhad FC before returning to Perth on November 12.
The team has a great record on its Malaysian tours, winning five of its past six matches across 2014 and 2015.
Pagnoni said the 2016 squad was capable of even better performances after two months of preparation.
“The team is at least as strong as last year and the boys have shown a great attitude during training and in the matches we’ve played,” he said.
“We’ve added some new faces to the group, and there are others who are quite experienced on this tour so we’re in a good position.”
Permodalan Negeri Selangor Berhad was the only Malaysian team to beat WA over the past two years.
“There are never easy games for us up in KL and we don’t expect this year to be any different,” Pagnoni said.
“The Malaysian people are always great hosts and we’re very well looked after. But when we get out on the pitch it’s always extremely competitive, which is exactly what we want.”
Squad: Matthew Bennion (Southern Spirit); Tom Dixon (Gwelup Croatia); Juan Cabrera (Fremantle Croatia); Paul Rainford (North Perth United); Jesse Higgins (Kingsley); Phil Clarke (Hamersley Rovers); Alpha Sheriffe (Belmont Villa); Eamonn Kelly (North Perth); Kudzaishe Chigwanda (North Lake); Aaron Bahadori (North Lake); David Morris (Hamersley Rovers); Sebastian Munoz (Gwelup Croatia); Nicolas Tatasciore (Gwelup Croatia); Felim Rugal (Southern Spirit); Brad North (Southern Spirit); Isaac Koomson (Gwelup Croatia).
Coach: Rob Pagnoni
Assistant coach: Jack Monaco
Team manager: Graeme Marinkovich