Dushanbe: Daisuke Sato’s spectacular solo strike with 11 minutes remaining proved the difference as the Philippines edged out Tajikistan 4-3 in a seven-goal thriller in Tuesday’s 2019 AFC Asian Cup qualifier.
The Philippines looked to be on course for a comfortable second consecutive three points in Group F as an eye-catching free-kick from captain Phil Younghusband and strikes from Javier Patino either side of half-time had Thomas Dooley’s side leading 3-0 after 48 minutes at Republican Central Stadium.
But a penalty from Parvizdzhon Umarboev and strike from Dilshod Vasiev gave the capacity home crowd hope of a dramatic turnaround.
But with Sato drilling home from outside of the penalty area, Manuchekhr Dzhalilov’s cool finish with two minutes remaining could not stop Tajikistan suffering a second defeat of the campaign.
The Philippines, meanwhile, top the table with a 100% record after two games following March’s 4-1 home win over Nepal, with Yemen two points adrift in second place after their earlier goalless draw in Kathmandu.
Younghusband, having scored twice against Nepal, opened the scoring after 28 minutes with a superb free-kick from the centre of the goal that curled and dipped past goalkeeper Abduaziz Mahkamov.
China-based Patino then doubled the visitors’ lead four minutes before half-time after an eye-catching build up, before adding a second three minutes into the second half.
But after Umarboev’s penalty three minutes before the hour mark gave the home side hope, Vasiev rounded off a swift counterattack four minutes later as Tajikistan further reduced the deficit.
Sato, though, crucially restored the Philippines’ lead with a rasping strike which gave Mahkamov no chance, leaving Dzhalilov’s shot across Patrick Deyto only turning into a late consolation for the home side.
MANILA--Call it crazy, madness or anything cardiac.
The Philippines won their second straight match and remained on top of group F of the Asian Cup Qualifiers, but not without a huge fightback by Tajikistan, escaping Dushanbe by the odd goal in seven late Tuesday evening (Wednesday morning Manila time).
With the 4-3 scoreline, the Azkals have emulated what the Malditas did to the home side two months ago, thus completing the double in both men's and women's ACQ.
And with Nepal holding Yemen into a goalless stalemate, Thomas Dooley's men are now two points clear at the top of their pile before their Sept. 5 tiff in Bacolod.
In a classic fashion, Phil Younghusband silenced the loud Dushanbe crowd to put the visiting side on the board first with a curling free kick past Abduaziz Makhkamov in the 27th minute. The skipper is just four goals away from a half-century of Azkals goals in which no one has ever reached before.
Javier Patiño made it 2-0 just four minutes before half time when he converted Mike Ott's pass in a clinical finish for his fifth goal for the country.
The Azkals tripled their lead three minutes after the restart when the Henan forward bagged his brace with an empty net strike after latching on the younger Ott's pass once again.
But Tajikistan fought back with two goals in a four-minute span gave an anemic Pamir Stadium a huge spark of life.
Tajik captain Parvizjon Umarboev scored from the spot in the 57th minute and four minutes later, substitute Dilshov Vosiev rocked the crowd after converting on a counter.
However, Daisuke Sato gave the Azkals three precious points by making it 4-2 in a blistering fashion by firing in from outside of the box that left Makhkamov no chance.
Late drama ensued in the final minute where Manuchekr Dzahilov pulled one back, but Tajikistan could not find another goal to avoid defeat for the second match running, dragging them further at the bottom with no points on the board to show for.
BIÑAN--There is one 4-0 result that happened on Saturday after all.
Stallion Laguna dropped four goals and blanked reigning Guam Soccer League champions Rovers in a special club friendly at the Biñan Football Stadium.
Yannick Tuason struck first for Laguna 15 minutes into the match, while Ryota Ishikawa made it 2-0 in the 32nd minute.
Nicolas Ferrer added one more to the goal count with a 65th minute strike, while Jhan-Jhan Melliza sealed the 4-0 shutout in the 80th minute.
"I'm happy with how Jhan-Jhan Melliza and Nicolas Ferrer are playing," Coach Ernie Nierras commended the match's last two scorers.
Nierras, whose Laguna side looks to pull off a late run to the Final Four, further said, "As a whole. It's working pretty good. We're getting there."
Led by national team mainstays Jonah Romero, Ian Mariano, and skipper Jason Cunliffe, who all once played for the former Philippine top tier league UFL, Rovers are using the two-game series as part of their preparations for their upcoming title defense in the Guamanian league.
Both clubs' second teams are to face each other in another friendly on Sunday also at the said venue.
Friendly scrimmage at Rizal Memorial on June 9, 2017. Three 30-minute periods. Jarvey Gayoso scores the opener for the U22s. Then Jim Ashley Flores levels at 1-1 with a great first-time finish. Lee Jeong Min makes it 2-1 then Meralco's Simon Greatwich converts from the penalty spot.
Following the friendly against China PR, the Philippine Men’s National Team is set to play Tajikistan in the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019 Qualifiers scheduled on 13 June 2017 in Dushanbe, Tajikistan.
The following 21 players are called up for the match against Tajikistan led by head coach Thomas Dooley:
Amani AGUINALDO (Global Cebu)
Fitch Johnson Daviz ARBOLEDA (Stallion Laguna)
Misagh BAHADORAN (Global Cebu)
Kenshiro Michael DANIELS (Kaya FC-Makati)
Dominic Liam DEL ROSARIO (Ilocos United)
Patrick Phillip DEYTO (Global Cebu)
Kevin INGRESO (Ceres Negros)
Jim Junior MUNOZ (Ceres Negros)
Nicholas O’DONNELL (Global Cebu)
Manuel OTT (Ceres Negros)
Iain RAMSAY (Ceres Negros)
Camelo TACUSALME (JPV Marikina)
Dennis VILLANUEVA (Global Cebu)
Nathanael Ace VILLANUEVA (Meralco Manila)
Luke WOODLAND (Ceres Negros)
James Joseph YOUNGHUSBAND (Meralco Manila)
Philip James YOUNGHUSBAND (Meralco Manila)
Mike Rigoberto OTT (Angthong United)
Javier PATIÑO (Henan Jianye)
Daisuke SATO (Iasi)
Ruben DOCTORA Jr. (Stallion Laguna)
Both Jeffrey Christiaens and Hikaru Minegishi have been called up for the two matches, but will no longer join the trip to Tajikistan due to injuries sustained from last Wednesday’s match.
The match will take place at the Central Republican Stadium in Dushanbe, Tajikistan. Kick off is at 9:00 PM local time (12:00 AM Manila time).
A HOPEFUL start quickly turned ugly as the Philippine Azkals absorbed an 8-1 beating from China on Wednesday night in their friendly in Guangzhou.
The visitors not only absorbed a demoralizing defeat, but will also have to deal with several health issues six days before an Asian Cup qualifier against Tajikistan after James Younghusband, Daisuke Sato and Bahadoran were taken out due to injuries.
Among the three, it’s Bahadoran who looked the most shaken after he was seen clutching his knee, just a few weeks after recovering from an MCL injury.
Early goals from Ren Hang and Xiao Zhi put the Guo Zo in control but the Azkals’ aggressive play early offered a glimmer of hope against one of the strongest sides they've faced in recent years.
The Azkals got that break in the 34th minute when Mike Ott threatened off the counter, forcing the Chinese 'keeper to go beyond his line and allow Bahadoran to slot in the first goal for the Azkals.
But whatever momentum the Azkals got was quickly snuffed out as Yu Hanchao headed home China’s third goal with less than a minute left before the break.
Things just got worse for the Philippines from there.
Wang Yongpo and Chen Zhizhao scored in the first 10 minutes of the second half, after coach Azkals coach Thomas Dooley took off Amani Aguinaldo in favor of rookie Camelo Tacusalme and Junior Munoz for Kenshiro Daniels.
The Chinese continued to up the pressure from the backline, forcing the Azkals to spread wide before Zang Xizhe made it 6-1 in the 68th minute by getting back at Patrick Deyto for saving his penalty a few minutes back.
Deng Hanwen then wrapped up things for the hosts by scoring the final two goals before more than 21,000 home fans at Tianhe Stadium.
Read more at http://www.spin.ph/football/news/philippine-azkals-suffer-horror-seven-goal-beating-at-hands-of-china-in-friendly#bOK885uET5DE8tgL.99
Kuala Lumpur: The remaining teams in this season's AFC Cup have had their paths to the final clarified following the competition's Knockout Stage draw in Kuala Lumpur on Tuesday.
Zonal Final - WEST September 12, First leg: Al Wahda (SYR) v Air Force Club (IRQ) September 26, Second leg: Air Force Club v Al Wahda
Zonal Final - ASEAN August 2, First leg: Home United (SIN) v Ceres Negros (PHI) August 9, Second leg: Ceres Negros v Home United
Inter-Zone Play-off August 22, SF1 First leg: FC Istiklol (TJK) v ASEAN Zonal Champion September 12, SF1 Second leg: ASEAN Zonal Champion v FC Istiklol
August 23, SF2 First leg: JSW Bengaluru (IND) v 4.25 SC (PRK) September 13, SF2 Second leg: 4.25 SC v JSW Bengaluru
Inter-Zone Final September 27, First leg: SF1 v SF2 October 18, Second leg: SF2 v SF1
2017 AFC Cup final November 4 Host: Inter-Zone Final Winner
In West Asia’s Zonal final, Syria’s Al Wahda will host the first leg, with defending champions Air Force Club of Iraq hosting the second leg. The winner will qualify for the AFC Cup final.
Singapore’s Home United will welcome Ceres Negros of the Philippines for the ASEAN Zonal Final first leg, before travelling to Bacolod City for the return tie a week later.
The ASEAN Zonal Champion will qualify for the Inter-Zone Play-off Semi-finals, where they will face Central Zonal Champion FC Istiklol over two legs. The winners will subsequently host the opening game of the Inter-Zone final.
Meanwhile, 2016 runners-up JSW Bengaluru will host DPR Korea’s 4.25 SC in the first leg of their Inter-Zone Play-off Semi-Final, before heading to Pyongyang for the second leg.
The 2017 AFC Cup final will be hosted by the winner of the Inter-Zone Play-off.
The Philippine Azkals fly to Guangzhou on Monday for its most high-profile international friendly yet aimed at sharpening them for the AFC Asian Cup Qualifying game against Tajikistan.
The Azkals face China on Wednesday night at Tianhe Stadium in Guangzhou, marking the first time in recent memory that the two countries are facing off.
But the more important match for the Azkals will be on June 13 in the Tajik capital of Dushanbe, where they are gunning for a second straight win in Group F of the qualifying stage against Tajikistan at Central Republican Stadium.
Azkals coach Thomas Dooley has called up 23 players for the trip to China and Tajikistan, including veterans Phil and James Younghusband and newcomer Ace Villanueva of Meralco Manila and Ceres-Negros stalwarts Manny Ott, Kevin Ingreso, Iain Ramsay, Luke Woodland, Junior Munoz and Jeffrey Christiaens.
Also in the lineup are Global Cebu’s Patrick Deyto, Nicholas O’Donnell, Misagh Bahadoran, Amani Aguinaldo, Dennis Villanueva and Pika Minegishi, Kenshiro Daniels and Antonio Ugarte of Kaya Makati, Fitch Arboleda of Stallion Laguna and Dominic Del Rosario of Ilocos United. JPV Marikina defender Camelo Tacusalme was also included in the squad, which will be beefed up by foreign based players Javier Patino (Henan Jianye), Daisuke Sato (Iasi) and Mike Ott (Angthong United).
First choice goalkeeper Neil Etheridge said he was skipping the two matches in preparation for his move to Cardiff City in the English Championship, which is just a level below the English Premier League.
“I’ve always put the Azkals first, but this is a slightly personal move for me, a massive move in my career and I can’t jeopardize it,” Etheridge told the Inquirer.
Etheridge’s contract with Cardiff starts on July 1.
MANILA--Kaya Makati and JPV Marikina successfully defended their turf to cap off a clean sweep of home wins for the week in the PFL this season.
Kaya successfully defended UMak for the third time of asking with a 1-0 win over Stallion Laguna.
Marwin Angeles scored the lone strike in the 40th minute, and Noel Marcaida's men pushed the visitors further down the bottom of the PFL table despite having Miguel Tanton sent off in injury time for time wasting.
Kaya locked their hold at second after five matches, just two points behind leaders Meralco Manila before the league goes on the international break.
Meanwhile in Rizal Memorial, JPV Marikina needed a late charge in between the halves to post a 2-0 win over struggling Ilocos United.
David Basa got to the board first with a header in the second minute of first half stoppage time, then Koichi Belgira struck in the 65th minute to seal all three points and grab the third spot away from Global Cebu with nine points after five matches.
JUST last month, Global Cebu was playing like the best team this country has to offer.
In that stretch, Global ruled its tricky group in the AFC Cup, ending the group stage with 10 goals to win its final three games, highlighted by a 3-2 victory over Johor Darul Ta’zim.
Sadly for Global fans, those moments seem like ages ago.
Now one of the country's preemiment clubs is on an alarming slide after the Cebuano club conceded goals in the final eight minutes in four of their last five games.
In both legs of the AFC Cup zonal semifinals, Global conceded three goals from the 89thminute which a highly anticipated battle with Ceres Negros in what could have been an all-Filipino Asean Zone Finals.
In those games, Global was in total control for most of the match only to be stunned by goals from Stipe Plazibat, who scored twice in Singapore to send Global crashing out of the tournament.
The struggles in this stretch have reached the apex when they swung by the Panaad Park and Stadium last Saturday to play domestic rival Ceres in the Philippines Football League.
They dropped a 1-0 result, no thanks to another late goal by Jeffrey Christiaens in the 83rd minute.
While their losses against Home United were heartbreaking since they looked sharp and in control for the most part, it was a completely different story in Bacolod.
Things just started to turn for the worse.
Ceres enjoyed a 68 percent possession in that game and had 10 shots on target, 18 shots in all. Global had one shot on target the whole game.
“I’m disappointed because in the past three or four games we always concede at the last minute,” said Global goalkeeper Patrick Deyto, who has been unjustly mocked and crucified on social media for the past few games.
“I don’t know what’s wrong. We have to analyze what’s the problem because we cannot keep going like this,” he added.
There's no doubt Deyto had a hand in their recent disappointments. But with the way Global played against its Visayan rival, it’s evident that it’s not just Deyto who’s been struggling,
That 1-0 loss could have been bigger had it not been for several good stops made by Deyto, who’ll be heading into the international break as the country’s first-choice 'keeper.
Read more at http://www.spin.ph/football/ufl/news/unfairly-or-not-keeper-patrick-deyto-takes-heat-as-global-continues-to-leak-late-goals#eztlDGAJlaZxkfPf.99 http://www.spin.ph/football/ufl/news/unfairly-or-not-keeper-patrick-deyto-takes-heat-as-global-continues-to-leak-late-goals
BACOLOD - Jeffrey Christiaens became the first ‘Visayas Clasico’ hero as his late goal propelled hosts Ceres Negros F.C. to a thrilling 1-0 victory over Global Cebu F.C in their titanic clash in the Philippines Football League on Saturday at the Panaad Park and Stadium.
Christiaens broke the deadlock right in the 83rd minute, much to the delight of the loyal Negros fanbase who trooped to the Panaad Stadium.
Substitute Stephan Schrock came in the 62nd minute and quickly made his presence felt as he sent a lovely cross right into Christiaens, who sent a half-volley past a very game Patrick Deyto.
“It’s nice to score. The most important is three points. I’m just the lucky one to score,” said Christiaens in the post-match.
“Schrocky did a great job. He put it perfect, right in front of the goal. I didn’t think, I just put at the back of the net,” he added.
Just a few days removed off their respective AFC Cup matches, it was expected to see both clubs come out as sluggish.
However, fans were treated with a very sound and technical game, with both squads playing high quality football.
Chances came aplenty, particularly for the hosts with Martin Steuble, Bienve Maranon and Iain Ramsay all getting chances to score but Deyto proved to be just too good to be beat.
But just like in their past couple of games, the Cebuano side were once again left frustrated in the end after conceding a late goal for yet another heartbreaking defeat, their first in this tournament.
“Defensively they were very strong. We insisted, and we scored finally and I’m very happy for the players,” said Ceres head coach Risto Vidakovic.
“It’s not easy to play these kinds of games, especially coming off an important match. Thankfully my players were very professional and they did a good job,” he added.
With the result, Ceres got their first win of the tournament after getting a draw in their first game against Kaya F.C Makati last month. They now have four points.
Global, on the other hand, dropped all three points for the first time this season as they remained at seven points after four games.
Read more at http://www.spin.ph/football/news/jeffrey-christiaens-ceres-negros-fc-global-cebu-philippines-football-league#fED8cqEE6QRgRbq1.99
By Kevin Estrada MANILA -- Meralco Manila remain unbeaten in the PFL for the fourth match running, downing Davao Aguilas, 2-0 tonight at the Rizal Memorial. The Sparks found the net in both halves to get maximum points and to go five points clear of Kaya FC Makati in the table. Curt Dizon poked it in from close range in the 6th minute, and James Younghusband finished off the Aguilas with thunderous shot in the 70th minute. "We're able to identify the details of the movement [of Dylan De Bruycker and Omar Khan]. They were able to execute their plan but in the end we have maturity on the midfield," an elated Aris Caslib quoted after the match. In the other match, Ceres Negros got their first win of the season, dispatching Global Cebu in the first Visayas Clasico 1-0. http://www.dugout.ph/2017/06/meralco-mnl-remain-unbeaten-in-pfl.html
BACOLOD CITY – Powerhouse Ceres Negros makes its home debut in the Philippines Football League when it hosts rival Global Cebu in what promises to be an explosive encounter on Saturday, even as Meralco Manila tries to extend its unbeaten start to four matches.
Just three days after conquering Malaysian champions Johor Darul Ta’zim to reach the AFC Cup Asean zonal finals, the Busmen resume their domestic campaign at 4 p.m. against a Global side still hurting from a semifinal exit in the AFC Cup last Tuesday.
The match will be aired live on PTV 4.
The Sparks stake their perfect record against the Davao Aguilas in the 7 p.m. kickoff at Rizal Memorial Stadium.
Meralco has enjoyed a sensational start under coach Aris Caslib, beating Stallion (5-1), Ilocos United (2-1) and JPV Marikina (1-0) to seize top spot. But they will be up against a dangerous Davao side, which is looking for its first win of the campaign.
The Aguilas only have a point to show from their first three matches, with their last match against Kaya Makati ending in a 0-2 defeat. Davao will miss skipper Jason Cordova due to suspension after he was sent off in the match against Kaya.
Nonetheless, Caslib isn’t looking past the Aguilas, who will also miss midfielder Andreas Esswein who is out due to an illness.
“This will be a tough match,” said Caslib, whose team’s eight goals so far have come from eight different players. “Our players must improve their organization in attack.”
Caslib pointed to Davao’s Serbian striker Nikola Grubješić and 19-year-old attacking midfielder Dylan De Bruycker as scoring threats for the Aguilas.
“We are confident that we are strong enough to beat Meralco,” said De Bruycker.
Ceres has beefed up its roster for the PFL with Stephan Schrock returning from Germany and the signing of Spanish winger Antonio Bello. Omid Nazari, who played for Global last season, also saw action for Ceres in the 1-1 draw against Kaya to start the season.
Global is in second spot with seven points, after beating Kaya, 3-1, last May 24 in a match where new signing Sekou Sylla bagged a brace.
STEPHAN Schrock is finally back in town for Ceres Negros and it couldn’t have come at a better time for one of the country’s premier clubs.
Schrock witnessed his team barge into the AFC Cup Asean Zone Finals last Wednesday in a highly emotional match against Johor Darul Ta’zim at the Panaad Stadium which the Busmen won 2-1 on a late penalty.
Now, the question is if Schrock can play for the Ilongo-side in their two-leg showdown with Singapore’s Home United, and ensuing matches assuming they push through to the inter-zonal semifinals.
The answer is yes.
The transfer window for the AFC will re-open in August, giving Ceres the luxury of registering new players for the tournament. This means the Fil-German midfielder can be called up for AFC action, alongside the Swedish born Fil-Iranian midfielder Omid Nazari.
Schrock said he would be happy with whatever role he’s given, considering Ceres’ form over the past few games and his insertion could mean one less slot for players who have already worked for them in the regional cup.
That’s why Schrock would rather let his coach decide on what to do with him.
“It’s fantastic. The team did the hard work already and went to the finals. Historic for Philippine football not only for Ceres,” Schrock told SPIN.PH after their training session last Thursday.
“First I have to work my way to the team back because all 18 or 21 players who played already deserved to play and they worked hard. I’m just happy that I can hopefully boost them a little bit. In what way? The coach will find out soon,” he added.
Schrock, however, could make his return for Ceres on Saturday in their titanic clash against Visayas rivals Global Cebu FC.
Schrock was active in training and considering how spent most of his teammates were in their AFC Cup match just three days ago, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Schrock be inserted in the lineup, particularly in a game this big.
Schrock is admittedly excited, but is still holding his breath on whether he’ll finally be inserted in the game.
“If I can make it in the lineup already for Saturday I’ll be very happy. It’s a special game, always against Global, not too special in the stage of the league cause it’s just the second game for us but it’s always a good test against Global, I’m happy to be back,” Schrock said.
Read more at http://www.spin.ph/football/ufl/news/stephan-schrock-ready-to-give-ceres-negros-a-major-boost-in-historic-afc-cup-match#BpAE5wM6IjQ0jUTy.99
BACOLOD CITY – Buoyed by a magical atmosphere at the Panaad Park and Stadium, Ceres Negros FC became the first Philippine team to make the AFC Cup Asean Zonal Finals after outlasting powerhouse Johor Darul Ta’zim, 2-1 on Wednesday night.
Fernando Rodriguez converted the winning penalty in the 94th minute after being taken down by Aidil Zafwan in the previous set piece to propel the Busmen to a showdown with Singapore’s Home United in the regional finals.
The goal tied the aggregate score at 4-4, allowing Ceres to move through to the finals by virtue of away goals after taking two at the Larkin Stadium two weeks ago.
To make matters worse, JDT goalkeeper Farzial Marlias went ballistic immediately after a penalty, throwing fits on the pitch as he was booed off the field by a rowdy Panaad crowd.
“I have all confidence to score. I was just thinking about my family the whole time,” said Rodriguez, who sent the ball down the middle, keeping Farzial off balance the whole time.
“Usually the goalkeeper chooses one side, I chose the middle and I scored,” he added.
The regional finals between Ceres and Home United will be played in August with the exact date yet to be determined.
After a tense start for both sides, things finally started to open up for the Busmen when Kevin Ingreso sent a lovely ball from the free-kick into defender Kota Kawase who scored a tap-in in the 26th minute.
The entry of Hazwan Bin Bakri in the second half changed the complexion for the Southern Tigers, with the attack-minded midfielder creating all sorts of problems for the Ceres backline.
His persistence then paid off when he located a leaking Gabriel Guerra in the 65th minute to score off a tight angle, tying the game at one apiece and giving control back to Johor.
The game slowed down in the ensuing minutes, with Ceres’ lone chance in that span being sent high off the bar as OJ Porteria missed his chance to give his team back ahead with the goalkeeper at his mercy.
Thankfully for Negros, there was one more room for drama in the match as Chinese referee Fu Ming gave the hosts a penalty, much to the delight of the crowd.
“It’s not easy to control emotions, especially if you need to win,” said Ceres head coach Risto Vidakovic. “We played a very good first half. In the second half we didn’t play so well. But I think after 180 minutes, I think we deserve it, to qualify to the finals.”
Read more at http://www.spin.ph/football/news/ceres-the-first-philippine-team-to-make-the-afc-cup-asean-zonal-finals#QqQxGiekwkHQfUor.99