by Josue Jamlang
The Alabang Country Club was abuzz once again on Sunday afternoon, as the United Football League held three exciting matches. It was a day of mixed fortunes for the new clubs, while the resident First Division teams Loyola ATR KimEng and Green Archers Orient Freight proved why they are in the country’s elite competition.
Pasargard provided the perfect platform for an entertaining afternoon, triumphing over the usually solid Laos FC in extremely dramatic fashion. It started off great for the Iranian side, who were leading 2-0 at half-time despite having to play most of the period with only ten men.
Although in an unfamiliar position, coach Jovanie Villagracia’s team talk at the interval proved to be effective, as Laos came back strong in the second half. Facing a two-goal deficit, the determined side picked up the pace and made it difficult for Pasargard to enjoy any sort of prolonged possession of the ball. Their pressure paid immediate dividends, as they clawed their way even, before going ahead 3-2 with less than a quarter of the game to go. While it seemed Laos had completed a dramatic turnaround, the Iranians had other ideas, as they pressed forward and capitalized on some shoddy defending to equalize. Minutes later, with the game just about to end, Pasargard breached the Laos defense one last time, announcing their arrival to the LBC-UFL Cup with an incredible comeback.
Loyola ATR KimEng then comfortably dispatched of Mama Africa in the second game at 3pm, strolling to a 4-2 win despite being far from their best. Green Archers Orient Freight, who played simultaneously, marked their debut under the reign of new coach Jose Ramon Garcia in promising fashion, defeating new club Inter Manila 1-0 in a tight and cagey affair.
The United Football League is in full swing on Halloween, with four games taking place at the Alabang Country Club, and three at the Nomads Sports Club. Global Smartmatic will be making their long-awaited debut, while the always competitive Armed Forces clubs Navy and Army Fritz and Macziol will also be kicking off their respective campaigns. Meanwhile, Loyola ATR KimEng will test their 100% record when they lock horns with the mighty Union. Plenty of action is in store for everyone on October 31, so don’t miss out! Check the www.footballalliance.ph website for complete fixtures. This is the UFL. It’s OUR Game!