OLONGAPO CITY: The region's first and only football league is set to kickoff on Sunday, May 20th, at the Jose V. Yap Sports and
Recreational Park with four teams representing Central Luzon provinces.
"We organized the league for football players to showcase their talents and improve individual and team tactics. But more importanly, this is gives
Central Luzon players a venue to play
the beautifu game of football," Christian De Ocampo, coach of the Tarlac
Football Club explained.
The league format is a home and away game with the championship going to the team with the highest number of point at the end of two rounds.
Among the founding teams are the Lighthouse Amihan Football Club (Olongapo City/Subic Bay), Futbulakenyos (Bulacan), Tarlac Football Club (Tarlac) and Pampanga Football Club (Pampanga).
"We settled for four teams during the first season to make the league manageable and to keep the logistical requirements reasonable for all participants. Moving a team from one place to another and hosting a game requires a bit of resources so we hope the community will also extend support to the teams," Larry Simon, coach of Pampanga Football Club said.
The CLFL champion takes home Sinukuan, the league's perpertual trophy, designed by Arvin Simon, an architecture student from Don Bosco Mandaluyong and done by some of the best craftmen in Pampanga.
Bulacan coach Emman Robles said that football pride is at stake here.
"All teams want to win. This time, we want to win for our cities and provinces. The Sinukuan is the gold standard of football development in the region. And all teams want to bring her to their repective areas," he said.
All games will be played on a weekend at the home field of a host club.
The teams also agreed to hold the first futsal league in the region dubbed Central Luzon Futsal League.
"Futsal (indoor football) will be played during the rainy season to keep the players fit. It also signals the arrival of futsal in the region as a major sport," John Bayarong, Lighthouse Amihan Football Club coach said.
The Subic Bay Futbol Club, Amihan FC's mother club, completed its futsal development program last May 18th training around 200 kids.
"We at the Pilipinas Futsal Association (PFA) support the regional competitions. We hope that more regions take the initiative to set up their own league for both football and futsal," Xarex Velazquez, coordinator of the PFA said.(30)