United City FC retains most of Ceres core with signing of Ott brothers

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, August 8) – Despite delayed resumption of practices due to the re-imposition of the modified enhanced community quarantine in Metro Manila, United City FC (UCFC) continued to beef its roster once the Philippines Football League resumes action.

The club, bought by MMC Sportz Asia from the Yanson family-owned Ceres Negros Football Company in July, announced on Friday it re-signed Fil-German midfielders Manny and Mike Ott.

“Both, Manny and Mike, bring a tremendous amount of experience on the club and international level to the team and this will be instrumental in our pursuit to defend the PFL title and to progress from the AFC Cup Group stages in September in Vietnam,” said UCFC co-founder Eric Gottschalk.

Manny has been with the former Ceres club since 2014, having a short stint with Ratchaburi Mitr Phol FC in the Thai League 1 in 2019. Mike joined Ceres in 2018 after playing in Germany and Thailand. The brothers are also regulars in the national men’s football team Philippine Azkals.

The Ott siblings joined other Ceres-Negros FC teammates who also signed with the rebranded club last July. The returning players for the now UCFC are Stephan Schrock, OJ Porteria, Bienvenido Marañón, Robert Mendy, Takashi Odawara, Sean Patrick Kane, Hikaru Minegishi, Ron Bayan, Jun Badelic Jr., Angelo Marasigan, Arnie Pasinabo, Tristan Robles, Dennis Villanueva, and Joshua Dutosme.

The UCFC owners said the Ceres team management, led by general manager Ace Bright and head coach Risto Vidakovic, will be retained in the new team.

Gottschalk hinted of more additions to the group in its bid to retain the PFL crown and maintain their good standing in the 2020 Asian Football Confederation Cup group stage.

“These two (Ott brothers) are not our final signings for the upcoming season, with four more players to be announced shortly,” he said.