MANILA–Loyola needed a blitz at the restart to jolt Forza yet again as the second round got underway early Saturday afternoon at the Rizal Memorial.
Phil Younghusband bagged a brace in two minutes, as the Sparks instigated a second-half fightback to overturn a one-goal deficit into a 5-1 rout. He also did that to the Muntinlupa side last June 18 in a 4-0 thrashing.
Alvaro Castiella, Koichi Belgira, and Jinggoy Valmayor all found the net for Loyola gaffer Simon Mcmenemy, who bounced back from back-to-back defeats and moved up to third in the table, two points ahead of JP Voltes, who were set to play Kaya later on.
Forward Lionel Mekong shockingly took the lead Forza with his strike in the 23rd minute, but lack of discipline badly let down Forza boss Arvin Soliman in which they ended the match with nine men, with the Cameroonian goalscorer among those who were sent off by referee Krizmark Nañola for stomping Anto Gonzales’ face in the 52nd minute.
The former Azkals tactician minced no words about physicality and the officiating after the match, but at the same time commended his men on overcoming such shock deficits.
“It wasn’t a pretty game at all,” Mcmenemy lamented. “Two sendoffs, in front of the camera. Without being disrespectful to anyone or any club, this is not what we want to see in the UFL. There is no place on that in football, let alone in this country,” he added, as he thinks that the dismissals of Mekong and Nicolas Ferrer sixteen minutes later were both deserved.
“But I’m still very critical about the refereeing here, he struggled knowing what’s happening and slows the game down. The tempo of that game comes from the refereeing, and if he’s not strong enough that’s what happens,” the Scot said afterwards, in which he added that if not for the missed chances, they might even lead at the half.