South China send scouts to Ecuador in hunt for fresh talent
One of the Caroliners' major targets will be Cuenca midfielder Alejandro Frezzotti, who impressed Hong KOng fans in the Lunar New Year tournament
South China will send a scouting team to Ecuador this week as part of their recruitment drive for new foreign players.
Led by head coach Yeung Ching-kwong, the three scouts will visit Ecuadorean First Division club Cuenca, who have a good working relationship with their new convenor Wallace Cheung Kwong-yung.
"Our target is to bring five to six South American players to Hong Kong," said the coach. "We will also visit Cuenca to learn more about their operations and see if they can help us improve our club management."
One of their major targets will be Cuenca midfielder Alejandro Frezzotti, who impressed Hong Kong fans during the club's appearance in the Lunar New Year tournament, which saw a combined team of Citizen and Cuenca players lift the trophy.
"He has a high work rate in midfield, which he proved in the New Year tournament and will be a star attraction if he can come to Hong Kong," said Cheung.
"We have already had two rounds of discussion with the player and are close to a deal."
Cheung said a monthly salary of over US$15,000 was needed to lure the Argentine player who started his career with their Premier Division club Lanus before moving to Ecuador.
South China have signed only Japanese striker Yuto Nakamura from Citizen, a club who will not join the Premier League in the new season. None of their foreign players from last season, however, has been offered a contract under the new management.
"We want to try the Ecuador players first and if we cannot find what we want, we will then consider the foreign players who played for us last season," said Cheung.
Cheung said a deal had been reached with two defenders - former Manchester City Academy product Sean Tse Ka-keung and Jack Sealy.
Law Hiu-chung from BC Rangers and Che Runqiu from Southern had also signed.