PH Azkals blank Yemen for 2nd win in World Cup Qualifying
DOHA, Qatar–The Philippines delivered a glittering display of attacking football to subdue Yemen, 2-0, Tuesday night for its second win in 2018 World Cup Qualifying at Qatar Sports Club Stadium here.
Misagh Bahadoran and Iain Ramsay were on target in the second half as the Azkals finished the game with a flourish to gain a share of the lead in Group H with North Korea.
The Azkals also have six points from their first two matches, just like North Korea which beat Uzbekistan, 4-2, at home earlier in the day.
“Im very happy with the way we played,” said Azkals coach Thomas Dooley.
Still on a high after that epic 2-1 win over Bahrain last Thursday, the Azkals controlled the first half with little reward. Javier Patino and Bahadoran as well as Manny Ott couldn’t cash in on their chances, but the Azkals were also hardly troubled on the other end.
The game lured 5,200 fans most of them Filipinos based in this oil-rich country.
Showing newfound confidence after scoring his first international goal against Bahrain, Bahadoran dazzled on the right flank. He finally broke the deadlock eight minutes after the break, cutting inside from the right and swapping passes with Patino before turning and shooting brilliantly past Mohammed Ebrahim.
The Philippines should have been 2-0 up 15 minutes later but substitute Patrick Reichelt couldn’t find the target with the goal at his mercy.
After dodging a bullet when Waleed Mohd’s strike went wide, the Azkals doubled the lead through Ramsay who was set up wonderfully by a low cross from Patino.
Luke Woodland impressed in his Azkals debut playing at the middle of a three man backline.