One of the newest foreign coaches in the world of Philippine football has left the country’s longest-existing professional team.
Kaya-Iloilo has announced that coach Graham Harvey has left the LBC-backed club after its 2021 AFC Champions League run, Saturday evening.
“Our Sincerest Gratitude to Graham Harvey for the massive contribution he brought to the club’s first-ever AFC Champions League campaign. We hope our paths cross again and we have the opportunity of working together once more,” said Kaya.
Under Harvey’s tutelage, Kaya defeated China’s Shanghai Port in the preliminary round of the AFC Champions League to make it in the group stage. Once they made it in Group F, the Philippines Football League side competed against the likes of Vietnam’s Viettel; Thailand’s BG Pathum United; and defending champions Ulsan Hyundai of South Korea.
“Graham will forever be a part of the Kaya Family! We wish him continued success at Redlands United FC,” added the statement.
“Thank you Graham. Una Kaya!”
While Kaya experienced routs in their first encounters with Viettel, BG Pathum United, and Ulsan Hyundai, their rubber matches against those three teams featured marked improvements. They were able to stand toe-to-toe with them while only suffering one-goal losses.
There is still no word about who will replace Harvey, who only joined on a short-term deal for the AFC Champions League, in the Kaya dugout when the club competes in the PFL, penciled to start on August 21. However, coach Yu Hoshide, who led the club to a second-place finish last year, may be in charge for the upcoming season.
Veterans such as Masanari Omura, Jovin Bedic and Simone Rota are expected to lead Kaya in the upcoming season. Meanwhile, the likes of Jarvey Gayoso, Zach Banzon, and Marco Casambre will bring youth to the team.