Striker Pereira latest star to issue positive passport update ahead of Hong Kong Asian Cup finals campaign

striker pereira latest star to issue positive passport update ahead of hong kong asian cup finals campaign

Stefan Pereira has joined fellow Brazil-born forward Juninho in declaring his likely availability for Hong Kong’s AFC Asian Cup finals campaign in January.

Southern striker Pereira completed his seven-year residency in early 2023, and expects his protracted passport application process to reach a fruitful conclusion “within two weeks”.

Such an outcome would allow Pereira, who has scored 10 goals in 10 matches this season, to link up with Jorn Andersen’s squad for next month’s pre-tournament training camp.

Head coach Andersen said during this month’s Fifa international window that he hoped Pereira and Juninho would receive clearance in time for the Asian competition.

Barring any unseen developments, Pereira will get the go-ahead soon after Juninho, who expects to receive his passport this week.

striker pereira latest star to issue positive passport update ahead of hong kong asian cup finals campaign

Brazil-born Pereira expects his passport in time to represent Hong Kong at the Asian Cup finals. Photo: Chan Kin-wa

“Hong Kong immigration are waiting for some papers from Brazil, and when they arrive, I will get the passport,” Pereira told the Post.

“I think, within two weeks I will have my documents and passport, so I hope I am available for the training camp [beginning on December 14].

“Some of the national team staff have been calling me. They have supported me through the whole process, checking everything was going well with the passport, and asking for updates on my fitness.

“It would mean everything to represent Hong Kong, but I cannot think too far ahead.”

Pereira, 35, has come on leaps and bounds in the autumn of his career. As recently as the first half of 2019-20, former club BC Rangers farmed Pereira out on loan to Citizen in the Hong Kong First Division.

He scored 19 goals in 13 matches, before returning to Rangers, and completing a transfer to Southern at the end of the campaign.

striker pereira latest star to issue positive passport update ahead of hong kong asian cup finals campaign

The 35-year-old was scoring goals on loan at Citizen in Hong Kong Division One as recently as 2019-20. Photo: K.Y. Cheng

In 81 appearances for the district side, he has 54 goals and 13 assists, placing him on Anderson’s radar, who is steadily accumulating ammunition for his formerly shot-shy team, ahead of a first Asian Cup finals appearance since 1968.

Hong Kong scored three goals in the 10 matches before Everton Camargo and Michael Udebuluzor were naturalised. With that attacking duo in the ranks, six matches have yielded 17 goals.

“It is hard to explain why things changed for me in the past years,” Pereira said. “But I train hard, I work to try to help the team, and, maybe, it is the plan of God. It is my fourth season at Southern, the whole time has been amazing and I love the club.”

Pereira, who has played in Romania, and Bosnia and Herzegovina, in addition to spells with four different clubs in his birthland, was “very disappointed” in his performance in Southern’s scoreless draw with Kitchee last Friday.

He twice came desperately close to breaking the deadlock in a match that flew in the face of routine accusations over a stagnant Hong Kong Premier League.

Southern would have won but for the VAR deciding Kota Kawase had climbed on Charlie Scott before heading home deep into added time. Head coach Yeung Ching-kwong’s team are among a handful of clubs, including Eastern and vastly improved Tai Po, preventing Lee Man and Kitchee from streaking clear at the top of the table.

“We went to Kitchee and felt we could win the game,” Pereira said. “It is hard to compete with the top teams, but we knew how to do it.

“The new coach has brought a different style, with strong organisation. The effort of the team was a good sign for the future. We will come back stronger and perform well until the end of the season.”

News Related


Sports Illustrated scrubs AI-generated content after being called out for using deep fakes

Sports Illustrated scrubbed its site of AI-generated content that included bylines and photos for authors that don’t exist, according to a report.The publication — once home to authors like John ... Read more »

¡Los mejores del año! Conoce los nominados a la Gala Crack, los premios de TNT Sports

La señal que lleva el balompié criollo a las pantallas del país reveló a los nominados para su premiación de cierre de temporada. ¡Conoce todas las categorías y candidatos aquí! ... Read more »

JO 2024: les élus dénoncent des tarifs de transports établis "sur le dos des Franciliens"

De nombreux élus dénoncent l’impact sur les usagers de l’accord entre l’État et Île-de-France Mobilités, alors même que Valérie Pécresse avait assuré ne pas vouloir faire payer le coût des ... Read more »

Gary O’Neil says Wolves loss at Fulham may have ‘finally turned him against VAR’

Gary O’Neil said ‘maybe tonight has finally turned me against VAR’ after Wolves’ defeat (Zac Goodwin/PA) (PA Wire) Gary O’Neil admitted Wolves’ 3-2 defeat at Fulham may have ‘finally turned ... Read more »

Forest investigating allegations of homophobic abuse by fans at Brighton game

Nottingham Forest’s City Ground (Tim Goode/PA). (PA Archive) Nottingham Forest are working with the police to identify fans who are believed to have directed homophobic abuse at Brighton players and ... Read more »

‘What is the point of VAR?’ asks angry Gary O’Neil as Wolves lose at Fulham

Wolverhampton Wanderers manager Gary O’Neil appeals during the Premier League match at Craven Cottage (Zac Goodwin/PA) (PA Wire) Gary O’Neil asked “what is the point in VAR?” after his Wolves ... Read more »
Top List in the World