France World Cup winner Alphonse Areola can still play for Azkals

Kelvin Leong Kelvin Leong

Philippines can still persuade France World Cup winner Alphonse Areola to play for the Azkals even after his Russian adventure.

The 25-year-old goalkeeper was Didier Deschamps’ third-choice stopper behind Hugo Lloris and Steve Mandanda at the World Cup and now has a winners’ medal in his collection.

Despite his time with the Les Bleus, the Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) star can still make the switch to turn out for the Azkals instead.

Having been capped from the U-16 to the U-21 level by France, Areola has yet to make his senor debut and that entitles him to cross over if he wants to.

The Philippines Football Federation has already opened the door for him in 2011 when Azkals team manager Dan Palami invited him to join the national team.

It remains to be seen if the newly-minted World Champion will be tempted to take up the offer and challenge Neil Etheridge and Michael Falkesgaard for the number one spot on the Azkals roster.