Monday, January 9, 2012

Back in play

The Cambodia U-21s with a new addition, Fabio Cannavaro, center back row
Fabio Cannavaro's whistle-stop trip to Cambodia took to the playing field this afternoon, as the former Italian World Cup winning captain got back to basics with the Cambodian U-21 national team squad at the Olympic Stadium. A few hundred fans turned up to witness one of the world's greatest players joining in with the national team's training session in the full glare of the media, without exerting himself too much. He was introduced to the players and coaching staff including South Korean head coach Lee Tae-Hoon before Fabio joined in the quick passing session and then the 5-on-5 games, lasting more than an hour. Not so much a coaching clinic, as an opportunity to meet the country's future senior internationals and give them a boost by his presence and support for Cambodia's footballing future. After a quick wash and brush up, he made his way over the road from the stadium, to the soon to be opened Gold Dragon premises for a traditional eight dragon blessing ceremony. He looked suitably impressed. For the next 30 minutes, Fabio signed every picture or jersey presented to him, and posed for every photo that he was asked to, like the total professional he is. And each time, he did it with a smile.
Fabio stretches for a ball during the 5-a-side games with the Cambodia U-21s
Is Fabio a politician in disguise? Here he meets the children of his host, Rithy Samnang
Fabio is trying to get a good shot of the 8 dragon ceremony
It's all smiles at the autograph-signing session at Gold Dragon
Three happy youngsters with their signed Fabio photos

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