Come the Philippine Azkals’ most daunting “To dream the impossible” campaign – the 2019 Asian Cup – one man could most probably light it up if ever the team struggle for chances. That player is none other than Stephan Schrock.
Currently, the Ceres-Negros star can be considered as one of the best and most talented footballers in the country. He developed and honed is football abilities in Germany, playing for clubs such as SpVgg Greuther Furth, TSG 1899 Hoffenheim, and Eintracht Frankfurt before playing for his present club from the time when they were still known as Ceres-LaSalle in the now defunct United Football League.
A player with immense dribbling ability, awareness, versatility, and a powerful strike, these attributes make Stephan Schrock a threat on the offensive end whether it’s through scoring goals or creating spaces and scoring chances for his team.
Playing usually as a midfielder at either flank lately for the Philippines, he also is effective in the central area or as a more advanced attacking midfielder.
In a match, he has a license in certain moments to act as a ‘free radical’ who can roam across the surface to probe for possible attacking spaces, especially when the team have their backs to the wall and are chasing the game.
Such a ‘special’ situational role makes Stephan Schrock score spectacular goals or assists for his squad – both club and [especially] the Azkals – as he is able to carve out chances or unleash a shot at goal in the most unexpected situations and unthinkable spaces on the pitch.
To emphasise more on this here are a few of his goals that highlight such qualities and contributions to the team.
Consolation goal vs Uzbekistan – 2018 World Cup Qualifiers [2nd Round]; September 8, 2015
With the Philippines already down and out with a five goal deficit, Stephan Schrock provided a spectacular consolation for the Filipino home fans to cheer for and deny Uzbekistan’s goalkeeper Aleksandr Lobanov a clean sheet.
The “SCHROCKet” vs Kuwait – 2014 World Cup Qualifiers [2nd Round]; July 28, 2011
The Philippines were chasing the tie after the previous leg in Kuwait ended in a 3-0 loss. Stephan Schrock produced a ray of hope in added time of the first half, but progression wasn’t meant to be for the Azkals the end as Kuwait scored two unanswered goals to get an aggregate win of 5-2.
Crunch time winner vs Kaya FC – PFL Semifinal 1st leg; December 3, 2017
With time expiring in the first leg of the inaugural season of the Philippines Football League, Stephan Schrock produced a solo effort in injury time to give Ceres-Negros a precious away goal in a campaign the Busmen eventually were able to finish triumphantly to become the first domestic league champions.
The ‘impossible’ goal vs Ilocos United – PFL; September 30, 2017
Running down the right wing, whether it was supposed to be a cross or an intentional audacious strike, Stephan Schrock produced a spectacular goal from an almost impossible angle as he was able to beat the keeper for something special to remember for fans of Philippine football.
Other amazing highlights: Goals and assists for Azkals and Greuther Furth
Here are a few additional highlights – including his ability to create for his teammates.
As the Philippine Azkals begin their continental campaign, keep a close eye on Stephan Schrock. He might just pull off another rabbit out of a hat when the national squad get in a tough predicament in the course of a match as they set out in dreaming the impossible.