Tag Archives: Philippine football

Azkals In The Semi Finals – Home Game!

7 Dec

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Tomorrow, I am heading to Rizal Memorial Stadium again to watch the Azkals – the Philippine National Football Team in the first leg and our first home game in the AFF Suzuki Cup semi-finals. We are facing the Singapore Lions, who lost to us twice during friendly matches this year. The Azkals are on the semis for the 2nd time, one back in 2010 – the time they shocked the whole country that a national football team exist and that they beat the current tourney champion -Vietnam and went to the semis!

I can still remember it because I was one of those surprised to know that we actually have a football team and that they are competing! I was on vacation for about 5 months after quitting my demanding job, and was still infected by the FIFA World Cup fever that time, and so into football matches. Of course being a fan of the beautiful game, I immediately became a fan of the Azkals!

And now, we are on the semis again! If in 2010 we were denied of a home again because the tourney officials thought our stadium wasn’t good enough to stage an international game. Now,
we are granted of our well-deserved home game in front of the enthusiastic home crowd! Gosh I am so excited for tomorrow! Kudos to PFF for doing something to improve our stadium.

So I will be cheering proud and loud for the Azkals tomorrow! Like I always say, you have this different sense of pride when you have your own team representing the country.

See you my boys tomorrow! #Laban Pilipinas! #Azkals!

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FT Philippines 4-3 Palestine. And the Underdog Wins Bronze!

20 Mar

As much as I want to write about the controversial issue on racism and what makes one a real Filipino, to have a deeper look on the issue and as continuation of my last post, I will have to skip that now because I want to focus on the positive:

We bagged the 3rd place in the AFC Challenge Cup in Nepal today! Hooray!!!

Coming from the heartbreaking defeat last Friday against the Turkmenistan, who as of this writing is playing Korea DPR in the Finals, we, the fans and the team were so disappointed not to have reached the final round, but as the Philippines first choice goalie Neil Etheridge said, “we will move on.” 

And we have moved on from that defeat because we won the 3rd place in this tourney over Palestine! 🙂 It is actually a historic win for the Philippine Football since this is the first time ever we won in this cup, let alone first time qualify to play for this tourney. We were actually the only team in this competition to have gone through the pre-qualifier games and reached the semis. How’s that for an achievement? And now, a 3rd place for the underdogs? I am just so proud of our boys!

It was a pretty exciting game. My heart was pounding so fast, especially during the last 10 minutes where we were only leading by 1 goal with 4-3. I wanted the game to end soon so I could breathe! 🙂

Thanks for Phil Younghusband’s two goals and so the Guirado brothersAngel and Juan and of course all the Azkals for their hard work and dedication to win for the country.

The Palestines gave us a wonderful game also. They had the possession most of the time and did a good defending as well. And their fans, in fairness, (at least those I have interacted via internet) are really nice as well.

And to Nepal, who welcomed our team and cheered with us in almost every game we have, Thank you so much too!

I’m so happy.

Like I said before, during the world cup games, I would cheer for Brazil, Spain, S. Korea and other countries, but it’s different when you have your own team playing for the flag. It gives you a different sense of pride and happiness. 🙂 Go Philippine Azkals!

To God be all the glory! Thank you Lord Jesus! 🙂

**Update:

Korea DPR, the 2010 AFC Challenge Cup champion wins again!  Turkmenistan is 2nd obviously.

– Philippines’ Phil Younghusband received the golden boot award for the most number of goals in this cup.  6 Goals. Woohoo!!!

Below are some of their pictures taken from their twitter accounts:

Golden Boot Boy - Phil Younghusband (image c/o twitter.com)

Neil Etheridge and Angel Guirado receiving their bronze medal (image c/o twitter.com)

The Ilonggo boys! 🙂 Good job! (image c/o twitter.com)

Rob Gier with his bronze medal (image c/o twitter.com)

Philippine Azkals with Manager Dan Palami and Coach Weiss (image c/o twitter.com)

Philippine Azkals first XI in Phil vs. Palestine match (image c/o goalnepal.com)

Phil Younghusband (image c/o goalnepal.com)

Juani's first international goal for the Philippines! :)(image c/o goalnepal.com)

Coach Weiss and the boys are just happy! (image c/o goalnepal.com)

Philippine Azkals won 3rd place in the AFC Challenge Cup (image c/o goalnepal.com)

The Filipino crowd cheering for the Philippine team, with some Nepalis (I think) with them. (image c/o goalnepal.com)

Santi Araneta and Craig Burrows in the Manila Peninsula Hotel fountain - they promised to swim there if the boys win 3rd. And they did it! 🙂 (image c/o twitter.com)

Here’s the video:

Santi Araneta and Craig Burrows in Manila Peninsula fountain

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!

Of Football, Work, Reading, Writing and M

27 Jul

Right, I know I wrote in my last post dated June 23 that I will be writing that week and it didn’t happen. Reason? Hmmm… I don’t remember. hahaha… Well it’s busyness with a lot of things – work mostly and other things.

So, what have I been doing? Let me list as I remember:

1. Football – I’ve been watching a lot of football lately- both the international and local football, particularly the Azkals. Nope, I’m not into football just because of the hype the Philippine Azkals are getting. I’ve been into football for already a few years (thanks to my foreign students and my British best friend Idy for their influence). (See: 10 Significant Things of My 2010)

Well last month, Azkals played Ski Lanka during the first round of the qualifiers for WORLD CUP 2014. We finished with a beautiful 5-1 aggregate score (4-0 in the home game, oh sweet!) and it was our ticket to move to the next round and face Kuwait. Unfortunately though, we lost with 3-0 score during the away game last Sunday to Kuwait, but tomorrow we’ll make up for it.  Go Azkals!

2. Work – Been busy with work as usual. Sometimes I get too tired I wish it’s already 2013. Haha! 2013 because that is when my ‘bond’ with the company will expire and I can resign without paying them anything. Well so far so good, however sometimes they have too much activities that eats a lot of my time, leaving me no time for other things – such as this one, time to blog. Lately, it’s like I’ll just go home, have dinner, watch a little tv and sleep. Too tired to even think and write.

3. M – Yes we did talk last month. And I’m missing him again.  More on it later.

4. Content Writing – I also did a friend a favor when I wrote a content for his site. Last time I checked his site it’s still the old content he has, but he informed me that he’lll soon change it. Well, he actually asked me to write for him and said he’s going to pay, but I’m thinking of not charging him anything, after all he is a friend. I remember I wrote about their love story (he and his wife) that was read on their wedding day. And I remember he asked me the morning of the wedding itself! I crammed writing it but I am glad I was able to come up with a good story. Well after all, I witnessed how their love blossomed with him being my coworker and the wife as a trainee in our company back in 2004.  🙂

5. Reading – Yey! I’m about to finish the book Dug Down Deep by Joshua Harris. Hooray! I’m in the last 3 chapters and I can’t wait to finish it. I am writing about it very soon. I am learning so much from the book about my faith and my God. More about it soon. Also, I can’t wait to read my other books.

Okay, I think that’s it for now. I can’t think of others right now but will write as soon as I remember them. 🙂

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.  🙂

Starting My Birthday Happy!

11 Jan

Yep, being happy is a choice. And I’m choosing to be happy on my birthday, which is today! Yup Today!

Well, the start of my birthday is good:

Friends already greeted me (via facebook, text or messengers) and my best friend Idy called me on Skype at 12 midnight, making him the first person to officially greet me on this day. 🙂 Then Ab, my friend Libya also greeted and called me.

And to make the day even more beautiful….

NEIL ETHERIDGE greeted me on Twitter!!!

Yes! He tweeted Happy Birthday to me! 🙂 Ain’t it awesome?

After Phil Younghusband’s tweet to me the other day, it’s Neil’s turn.

Here’s the proof:

neil38etheridge happy birthday tweet to me

Well, I did tell him it’s my birthday and that I’m hoping he could greet me and he did.  I’m the 3rd person to receive a tweet reply from him, since he just created his account just a few hours ago.

Happy! Happy! Happy! 🙂 🙂 🙂

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