Philippine Azkals Won and Earned its First International Football Crown

By: System Admin in Sports

The long wait is finally over.

The Philippine Azkals won its first international football tournament after 99 years. The Philippine National Football team clinched the Paulino Alcantara Peace Cup title at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium on Saturday.

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It is also the first time that the Philippines has won over Chinese Taipei after seven tries.

The Philippines leaned on the strong offensive attacks from Fil-German Dennis Wolf who opened things up for the Philippines in the 10th minute. Followed by Chieffy Caligdong who turned goal-scorer in the 34th minute after collecting a clearance from the Chinese-Taipei defender before firing low past the keeper while OJ Porteria scored at the 43rd minute.

Amid controversy

The match then had to endure 10-minute of stoppage. A controversy happened midway when the Taiwanese were denied of a penalty claim after a a non-call at the 58th minute, when Demitrius Omphroy challenged an attacking Chang Han who ended up sprawled on the pitch.

Things were in danger of getting ugly as officials tried to eject the Chinese-Taipei coach. The non-call did not sit well with Taiwan team officials who refused to leave the bench despite getting dismissed by the referee.

The heated argument resulted to an additional eight minutes to regulation time. But all was for naught as Chinese-Taipei was unable to use the time to score a goal. The Philippine Azkals showed heroic defensive efforts as highlighted by Sacapano’s penalty save in injury time.

Making the win impressive though was the fact that the team played minus some of the Philippine Azkal "top stars". Europe-based players like first choice goalkeeper Neil Etheridge and midfield wizard Stephan Schrock had to fulfill commitments abroad. The Azkals were also without the Younghusband brothers James and Phil, who were dropped from the team due to commitment issues.

New Rising Azkal Stars

The three goal-scorers actually represent different eras of Philippine football. Caligdong has been with the national side even when the country struggled for support, while Wolf joined the squad at the height of its popularity. Porteria, at 18, has been hailed as one of the future stars of the squad.

The 29-year-old Wolf finished with four goals and emerged as the tournament’s top scorer and Most Valuable Player, while Eduard Sacapano and Jeff Christiaens were named best goalkeeper and best defender, respectively.

The Philippine Azkals repelled determined Chinese Taipei with a final score of 3-1.

Source: GMA news, PDI news


System Admin

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System Admin

DiversityHuman.com Administrator came from a very humble beginning. Born in the middle of the jungle. Raised by a very loving mother. Grew with a very hard working father. Experienced poverty at the lowest level.

Posted by DiversityHuman.com on 30 Sep 2012



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