A WELL-rested Pachanga-PLDT Home Fibr aims to stay within striking distance of leader Loyola Meralco as it squares off with Philippine Army on Thursday night at the Emperador Stadium in Mckinley Hill.
With 12 points in four games, the unbeaten Sparks are starting to pull away from the field, but Pachanga tries to prevent that as it takes the field at 7:30 p.m. against a reinforced Troopers side that joined forces with the General Trias International team featuring several Korean players.
A victory for Pachanga will be its third in four games and will increase its point total to nine points, putting the former Division 2 champions in second place ahead of Kaya based on goal difference.
Pachanga is coming off a nine-day break, which coach Noel Marcaida’s wards used to work on an offense that left much to be desired despite its 1-0 win over defending champion Stallion two Tuesdays ago.
“Kailangan namin i-improve yung fluidity ng attack,” said Marcaida, who will continue to count on Nate Burkey, the goalscorer in the Stallion match, Ariel Zerrudo, and Reza Amirkhizan, among others.
Homegrown Filipinos Ed Sacapaño and Boogie Margarse, aside from the Korean standouts, banner the Troopers, who rallied to force Green Archers United to a 2-2 draw last time.
Socceroo hopes to ride the momentum of a notable result last time as it faces Pasargad in the curtain-raiser at 5:15 p.m.
The Division 1 rookies held Stallion to a 1-1 draw last time for its point in the top flight after starting the league at the cellar with three losses. And they hope for a triumph this time against the Iranian-laden Pasargad, which is in eighth place with also a point to show.