Members of the Negros Occidental Football Association (NOFA) start their bid today for the title against North Cotabato in the quarterfinals of the PFF-Smart National U22 Amateur Championship at the North Ceres Football Field in Talisay City.
NOFA and North Cotabato FA are scheduled to play at 8 a.m., while at 2:30 p.m. Mizamis Occidental-Ozamis FA will tackle Baguio-Benguet.
Scheduled to play at the Panaad field today in Brgy. Mansilingan, Bacolod City are Davao FA against Camarines Norte at 8 a.m. and Bukidnon against Cavite in the afternoon match.
Winners in today's matches will advance into the semifinals on Friday at the Panaad pitch.
The eight teams, including host NOFA, are clashing for the first U22 Amateur Championship organized by the Philippine Football Federation and Smart Communications.
The tournament, which started October last year, is a platform for the country's younger player to develop and showcase their footballing skills while scouting for potential members of the Philippine team to the ASEAN competition.
Of the top eight U22 teams that advanced into the quarterfinals, three are from Luzon including Baguio-Benguet FA, Cavite FA, and Camarines Norte. NOFA is the sole representative from Visayas, while the four teams from Mindanao are Bukidnon FA, Davao FA, North Cotabato FA, and Mizamis Occidental-Ozamis FA.
The eight finalists bested 21 other groups from across the country and will compete in the single match elimination for the quarterfinals and the semifinals before reaching the final.
Up for grabs for the winning team is a cash prize of P100,000, while the second placer will take home P75,000. The third and fourth placers will get cash prizes worth P50,000 and P25,000, respectively.