By FRANCIS SANTIAGO
Marielle Benitez, captain of the women’s national football team, strongly believes that the country’s first-ever live TV coverage of the FIFA World Cup in South, Africa starting this June, will be the momentum the sport needs to gain more popularity in the local scene.
Balls, a dedicated 24-hour channel aired on SkyCable 34 and Studio 23, TV stations owned by ABS-CBN, has been granted by FIFA the local coverage of the prestigious tournament, and Benitez thinks this will be a great opportunity for football, the world’s No. 1 sport, to draw more interest in a country which has basketball as its top sport.
“For football players like me, it’s going to be exciting. This will be one way of reaching out to more people and get them into the World Cup fever,” Benitez, a three-time UAAP MVP and member of the RP futsal squad, said during a press conference.