Football

Fil-Am teenager hopes to join Azkals

Photo courtesy of Josh Boone

A 19-year-old Filipino-American hopes to impress the Philippine national men’s football team during the Azkals’ United States training camp this August.

Josh Boone, whose grandmother is a pure Filipino, will suit up for the Chicago Inferno which face the Azkals on Aug. 11 at the Wheaton’s Joe Bean Stadium in Illinois.

“This is a big opportunity. I would love to go there and help them in any way I can,” Boone told Examiner.com’s Dennis Guillermo. “It would be a big hope of mine to make the team.”

Boone boasts an impressive resume, having been invited to various camps and winning championships during his young career. He has been part of various international football camps such as the Empoli FC Academy in Italy and the Real Madrid Academy in Spain. He also attended West Ham United Academy in Atlanta, Georgia and tried out for Dutch club Cambur Leeuwarden.

He was also a member of the Alpharetta Ambush, a club based in Atlanta, Georgia, and helped the squad win the championship in the 2010 US Youth Soccer National Championships. The 5-foot-8 standout steered the Eastside High School in South Carolina to the 3A State title during his senior year.

Boone spent a year playing varsity football for University of North Carolina Wilmington. But after a year, he decided to become a professional player instead and went to Holland to train.

β€œI started playing soccer at a young age, and I just loved it,” Boone said. β€œIt was just a big sport in my family, and my goal since I was little was to be able to play professional soccer internationally.”

With the status of some of the foreign-based members of the Azkals due to club commitments remain uncertain, Boone, an attacking midfielder, could stand a chance of making the team. However, he still has to prove his worth to play alongside the likes of James Younghusband and Angel Guirado in the midfield.

Aside from the Inferno, the Azkals will also battle the US Virgin Islands national team on Aug.18 in Indianapolis, Indiana as part of their preparations for the upcoming 2012 ASEAN Football Federation Suzuki Cup in November.

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