Following favourable results for two clubs representing the Philippines in the AFC Cup 2019, it appears like things are finally on the upright in football for the Southeast Asian country.
It has been a different time for football supporters in the Philippines as the continued resurgence of their international football has left a lot to be proud about, but the doubt surrounding their domestic league makes everyone wonder what is going on in Philippine football.
The Philippine Football League lasted all but only two seasons and there is much optimism of the revamped Philippine Premier League which will kick-off on the 30th of Match and fans are eagerly awaiting the improvements it can bring as compared to the former.
As for the AFC Cup, Ceres-Negros and Kaya FC – Iloilo are part of it and their performances continue to boost hope that the Philippines are not too far behind by their neighboring ASEAN nations.
CERES-NEGROS ARE THE ELITE
Highlights – Ceres Negros vs Shan United
In the final season of the Philippine Football League, Ceres-Negros continued to stamp their dominance with yet another championship.
With performances in that year like the 7-1 thrashing of Global Cebu, Ceres-Negros were runaway winners with 60 points through the season while the closest were Kaya FC-Iloilo who had 49.
Placed in Group G of the AFC Cup 2019, they were impressive again as they beat Myanmar side Shan United 3-2 thanks to an epic performance from OJ Porteria as he scored a brace.
Easily the best club in the country, Ceres-Negros has long been the country’s beacon of hope in club football and are now making their mark in the AFC Cup.
KAYA FC – ILOILO ARE ON THE RIGHT TRACK
Highlights – Lao Toyota vs Kaya FC
Looking to replicate Ceres-Negros’ result in their opening AFC Cup match, Kaya FC – Iloilo looked good against Lao Toyota FC in their away match, as they led throughout most of the time thanks to Jovin Bedic’s goal in the 18th minute.
It was unfortunate on their part that Lao Toyota found an equaliser in the 87th minute but the Filipino club looked dominant and looked like they deserved maximum points through the most part.
At the moment, all things are level in Group H and with so much left to play for, Kaya FC’s chances of moving on are impressive as well.
CARRYING THE TORCH FOR PHILIPPINE FOOTBALL
These two teams are doing their best to try and show the world what football in the Philippines can achieve. And while the league may be starting over – again, there should always be somewhere to point to a beginning and hopefully it continues.
Add that to the fact that there are a lot of Filipino players who are plying their trade elsewhere, like Neil Etheridge for Cardiff City, Daisuke Sato who plays for Sepsi Sfantu Sheorghe and Luke Woodland who plays for Kuala Lumpur, then it seems that the Philippines are on track to something good.