Tag Archives: AFC Challenge Cup

FT Philippines 2:1 Tajikistan AFC Challenge Cup – The Rise of the Underdog

13 Mar

Okay, just a few hours ago, the do or die match between the Philippines and Tajikistan ended. And obviously, my national team won! Wooohoooo!!!! Yes! On to the semi finals! 🙂 Awesome. I am just very happy.  I wasn’t able to watch the match because I was at work but thank God for Twitter, I got to know the updates from the on going game while I was on my way home.  I almost screamed inside the van after Dyan Castellejo’s tweet on our 2nd goal.

Our striker Phil Younghusband equalized the first goal that the Tajik’s made on the 50th minute, then Angel Guirado‘s header during the last 10 minutes made us a semi-finalist, placing us in 2nd under Group B after North Korea. We now advance to the semi final round to  face Turkmenistan on Friday, while  N.Korea will play Palestine. I am expecting the current AFC Challenge Cup champion N.Korea will be in the finals, but I am also hoping and praying that it’s going to be us who will face them. 🙂

Well, it was game well-played by our team. We started as the underdog of this cup, grouped together with the AFC Challenge Cup champions- N. Korea being the current champ, India – 2008 champ, and Tajikistan – 2006 champ. And the Philippines? This is the first time we qualified in this cup and now, we’re on the semis! Wooohooo!!!

I know, the match on Friday is going to be a tougher one. Turkmenistan looks like a one organized team as well. We have to prepare. I remember, Philippine Azkals manager Dan Palami said in one of his interviews before the tournament that the team’s realistic goal for this cup is to make it to the semi final round, and here we are.

We definitely need to prepare for the match on Friday. It’s not going to be a walk in the park, especially that two of our key players – James Younghusband and Angel Guirado will miss the Friday’s game for the 2nd yellows they got today.

But I just have to say, I’m so proud of my boys! Way to go Azkals!

Here are some pictures from today’s match:

The starting XI (image c/o goalnepal.com)

Phil scored the equalizer goal for the Philippines. (image c/o goalnepal.com)

Angel Guirado who made us a semi-finalist! (image c/o goalnepal.com)

The Philippine Azkals celebrating with the Pinoy crowd in Nepal. (image c/o goalnepal.com)

The boys celebrating after the match!


FT Philippines 2:0 India in AFC Challenge Cup 2012

11 Mar

Quick post.

Congratulations to Philippine Azkals for winning today’s match against India in AFC Challenge Cup. Woohoo!!! The two beautiful goals made by Phil Younghusband left the Blue Tigers disappointed the entire 90+ minutes.  It was a historic win for us because it was the first time we won against India, who was the 2008 AFC champion.

The 2-nil scoreline resulted to a tie with Tajikistan who is also part of Group B in this tournament. This means, our national team will either have to win the game on Tuesday against the 2006 AFC Challenge Cup champion- Tajikistan or manage a draw but win in the penalty shoot out to advance to the semi-finals together with the current AFC Champion – DPK (North Korea).

Although I have to say, India is a country that is very close to my heart too. But then again, love and support your own! Go Azkals! 🙂

What a game! This is a happy Sunday for Filipino football fans! Woohooo!!!!

Philippine Azkals and the Issue on Sexual Harasment

10 Mar

Recently the Philippine National Football Team or the Philippine Azkals was hounded by a sexual harassment controversy. As a fan of football and supporter of my national team, I was surprised when the news broke out. I was a happy fan after their friendly game with Malaysia last February 29. Though I’ve been a football fan long time ago, I only watch matches on TV or via internet, so the Feb 29 match was my first time to watch a football match live from the stadium and my first time to see the Azkals play live from the pitch too. So I was ecstatic and hyper, cheering for my NT, especially when Denis Wolf scored his first international goal.

But 2 days later, after the boys left for Nepal for the AFC Challenge Cup, a sexual harassment was filed by the match commissioner Cristy Ramos (daughter of the former Philippine president Fidel Ramos) against two of NT’s athletes – Lexton Moy and Angel Guirado.  ALLEGEDLY (please journalist/sports writer, use this word or you’ll be sued, be a responsible journalist for God’s sake!), Moy made a comment over ‘her’ bra size, saying ‘Must be cup B’ while he was standing next to her. And being the only female in the room, Ramos immediately thought the remark was about her. Angel on the other hand, as claimed by Ramos was only in his underwear when the commissioner checked on him and didn’t even bother to cover himself, while the rest of the Azkals were laughing.

Immediately after the news broke out, Azkals manager Dan Palami apologized to Ramos on behalf of the team and promised not to tolerate this behavior if proven and that the team will cooperate with the investigation. But just like Palami said, it is sad that they were informed about the issue through media and not through Ramos herself.  He even mentioned that after the match, he and Ramos even exchanged pleasantries but the latter never mentioned anything about the locker room incident.

Ramos has been entertaining a lot of interviews from different TV networks and publications here and there while the team, including the two accused, is already in Nepal and have limited contact to the country to air their side of the story.

On the recent interview with Palami by Philippine Daily Inquirer,  he talked to the team about what really happened in the locker room and he was told that the boys were having a conversation prior to Ramos’ arrival. Apparently, Denis Wolf (my love) was teasing another player Carli de Murga about the flatness of his chest, when Moy who was standing near Ramos replied something like ‘Just because you are Cup B, you say that to Carli’. (Denis really have a nice looking chest, I swear! :D) But Ramos thought that Moy were referring to her bra size.

As for Angel Guirado, as he claimed via his twitter account, he was wearing shorts the time Ramos checked on him. He even said that even if he was on his underwear, it shouldn’t be an issue after all it’s  men’s locker room, it should be expected.

Though, being a woman I will not tolerate this as well, even if I am a huge football fan, if they really did something wrong, I would support the suspensions or whatever sanction the governing organization will give.  But what saddens me is how some people, mostly Filipinos, already have made judgment on the issue, calling the entire Azklas team rude and disrespectful to women, even if the issue is still being investigated by the AFC and PFF. Ramos even wants the entire team to be sanctioned. And to make things worst, local politicians are using the issue to their advantage since 2013 election is fast approaching.

The Azkals have come a long way and are doing really well when it comes to football. They reintroduced the sport to this basketball-craze country. They revived the beautiful game despite the lack of government funds and support from the private sector when they were starting a few years ago. And now that they are popular and are hailed as the new sports heroes, others would do everything to put them down. Sadly, crab mentality exists in this country. Come on, why can’t we all be happy and support all athletes especially the ones playing for the national team? After all, they’re doing it for the country.  And don’t give me the ‘half-Filipino and half foreign’ crap as an excuse that these guys don’t deserve the support. They are Filipinos too, even if their dad or mom is from another country.  At least, these lads, whether they’re foreign-based players or not, are doing something for the country. Unlike those who claimed themselves to be full-blooded Filipinos but only giving disgrace to our homeland.


Azkals 3:0 Bengal Tigers

26 Mar

In a do-or-die match, the Philippine Azkals destroyed Bangladesh Bengal Tigers with a 3-goal advantage and leaving Bangladesh scoreless. Ian Araneta scored during the 42nd minute while Angel Aldeguer Guirado scored twice after.

Azkals celebrating in Myanmar (inquirer.net)

Congratulations to the entire Azkals Team!

Philippine Azkals off to play Myanmar next

16 Mar

Although disappointed for losing the away game against Mongolia yesterday with a 2-1 score, Azkals will still move to the next round and play Myanmar, Palestine and Bangladesh next. The home game, where Azkals beat Mongolia with a 2-0 score added with the 1 away goal yesterday gained them an advantage over the Blue Wolves to qualify for the group stage of the AFC Challenge Cup.  The freezing weather is said to be the culprit for the sluggish play of the Azkals since it is very different from the tropical Philippines and other ASEAN Nation. But still, Filipinos are proud of the Azkals.  I am.  🙂

Congratulations Azkals! 2 goals against Mongolia!

9 Feb

I feel so happy today watching the Philippine Football Team- Azkals win the first “home and away” game with Mongolia in the AFC Challenge Cup Qualifiers.  I thought  I won’t be able to watch it because it was suppose to start at 6:30 and I was still on my way home that time. But I arrived just on time! They were still standing, proud and tall while singing the Philippine National Anthem. Yey! Anyway, it was a great game especially for the Azkals! They were great! They did really play that well! I love it!

Anyway, here are the clips when the Azkals scored:

First goal during the first half, by Emilio Caligdong.

Phil Younghusband’s goal during the last few minutes!

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