Leonardo Vitorino has been handed the top job in Cambodian football in a press conference yesterday afternoon, with the Brazilian taking over as head coach of the kingdom’s national football team in place of departing South Korean Lee Tae-hoon.
The former head coach of Lanexang United of Laos had spells at Buriram United of Thailand as technical director. He most recently entertained Cambodian fans in December, when his visiting Laos team thrashed Cambodian C-League champions Boeung Ket Angkor FC in their Toyota Mekong Club Championship semifinal.
With Lao football currently in a state of flux as a result of match-fixing allegations and Asian Football Confederation (AFC) censures, the Lao Premier League is on hiatus. And with Vitorino announcing his intention to leave in January, the Football Federation of Cambodia (FFC) ensured they got their man – whom they hope can build on the improvements made under Lee in recent years.
Vitorino, flanked by Sao Sokha, president of the FFC and May Tola, FFC spokesman, said he was excited about his new challenge.
“Cambodia told me they are looking to the future and have big challenges. Especially for 2023.
“I want to say to the players – you, the players, need to show me your quality. Right now, from today there are no superstars, they need to be a team. And of course, the fans here are always telling me to come and coach here.”