Hong Kong Football Association (HKFA)

Gary White expected to be finally announced new Hong Kong team manager next week: HKFA source

English coach will take up the role after final game in charge of Taiwan against Malaysia and new side will go up against his current one in first games

PUBLISHED : Friday, 07 September, 2018, 4:35pm
UPDATED : Friday, 07 September, 2018, 10:48pm

Englishman Gary White is going to take up his role as the new Hong Kong team manager, a Hong Kong Football Association source said.

The 44-year-old is still in Taiwan and will be leading the home side against visitors Malaysia in an international friendly at Taipei Municipal Stadium on Friday night.

But that will be White’s last assignment with the Taiwan side before he takes up his new post in Hong Kong next week, the source said.

White, who has also managed the Bahamas, Guam and China League One club Shanghai Shenxin, has been linked with the Hong Kong job since July.

The post was open following the sudden departure of Kim Pan-gon last December when the South Korean returned home to take up the post as the technical director at the Korean Football Association.

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HKFA chief executive Mark Sutcliffe said earlier that they would announce the new manager very soon and there wouldn’t be any big surprises.

Without a manager, Hong Kong was unable to arrange any friendlies during this week’s Fifa international break . Many of their Asian counterparts will take the opportunity to improve their world rankings.

Hong Kong currently ranks 142nd in the standings and one of White’s major challenges will be helping the team improve its ranking.

“He has proved in bringing Bahamas, Guam and Taiwan to their best world rankings and hopefully he can repeat his magic in Hong Kong,” said the source.

White’s name recently appeared on the staff list of the China Under-19 national squad as one of the assistant coaches but the source said the post was just an advisory role.

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“He has been our target following the decision of our selection panel and it takes time on discussion of the pay package,” he said.

Hong Kong team’s next international event will be the 2019 EAFF Cup second qualifying round in November. Hong Kong will have to travel to Taipei where they will face North Korea, Mongolia and the hosts. Only one team will advance to the finals which will take place in South Korea next year,