‘Pahang was difficult but I’m back with more experience’, says Cambodia and PKNS star Chan Vathanaka

Chan Vathanaka

Cambodia star Chan Vathanaka, who recently moved to PKNS FC in Malaysia, has opened up on his previous stint in the Malaysia Super League with Pahang FA and how he has grown as a player since.

The 25-year-old winger joined the Malaysia Super League side earlier this year on a free transfer from Boeung Ket Angkor. CV11, as he is commonly known, revealed he did not expect that an offer would come in from PKNS and thanked the side’s coaching staff for showing faith in him.

“I am very happy to be back here again. I have said before that I like playing here and I wanted to come back. I was a bit surprised when the offer came in because I was not expecting it. So I want to thank PKNS and the coaches for having faith in me and bringing me over,” he told FOX Sports Asia.

Expanding on his previous experience in Malaysia, he said, “Pahang was a very difficult stint and it was my first time playing here. But now, I am back with a bit more experience and understanding of Malaysian football. So it will definitely help me and I hope to be able to make an impact this time around.”

The winger got a chance to play against compatriot Theirry Bin, who plies his trade for Malaysia Super League side Terengganu, in the league opener. The match finished 1-1 with CV11 providing an assist from a corner.

“It was fun to play against Thierry last week. Everyone in Cambodia was looking forward to the game because the two of us were playing each other. It was a very nice experience. PKNS FC is now slowly becoming popular in Cambodia because the fans back home are passionate and they always want to find out how their players are doing abroad,” he said.

“We have Melaka up next and it will be a difficult tie. But we played well away from home last week and this time around, we will be playing at home. So I am confident that we can do better against Melaka.

“I like playing under Rajagobal because he keeps the team discplined and united. Everyone plays together as a team. And I also know Raja is very experienced and has won a lot with Malaysia before,” he added.

When quizzed who he believes is the most popular Malaysian player in Cambodia is, CV11 took Norshahrul Idlan’s name.

“MatYo is the most popular Malaysian player in Cambodia. Because he is a talented striker and scores a lot of goals. But in Cambodia, they don’t call him MatYo, they call him Talaha,” he said.