By Jerome Galunan Jr.
Two weeks before this year’s PFF-Smart National Club Championships kicks off on October 2, a launching press conference is set on September 19 at the Tapaz Room of Luxur Place in Bacolod City.
According to Negros Occidental Football Association (NOFA) General Secretary Paulline Javelona, the event will be attended by representatives from the Philippine Football Federation, Smart Communications, and from the defending champion Ceres FC.
Early this year, the Negros-based Ceres-La Salle FC stunned top clubs in the United Football League, the country’s premier league, following a 1-nil triumph over Pasargad in the finals played at the Rizal Stadium in Manila.
The provincial-based club mentored by veteran tactician Freddie “Nene” Lazarito earned the “Giant Slayer” moniker after beating the top teams in the UFL, namely, reigning league’s Cup champion Stallion Gilligan’s FC, defending UFL champion Global FC, and Kaya FC.
Lazarito’s ward consisted of young local talents led by Fil-Am midfielder Joshua Beloya backed by Korean and British recruits. Ceres FC is bankrolled by team managers Ricky and Leo Rey Yanson./