2016 AFF SUZUKI CUP: Azkals Post-Mortem, Offense and Defense

I just wanted to take a look at the Goals Statistics of the Azkals’ games in the 2016 Asian Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup and try to analyze how well they did both on Offense, and Defense. I am going to limit the data on the Goals only since it is the most important, game deciding factor anyway.

‘Data’
Below are the Goals data of all the six games that were played between the three teams in Group A during the Knockout Phase of the 2016 AFF Suzuki Cup:

Singapore – Azkals, 0-0
Singapore – Thailand, 0-1
Singapore – Indonesia, 1-2
Indonesia – Azkals, 2-2
Indonesia – Thailand, 2-4
Azkals – Thailand, 0-1

‘Defense’

  • Total Number of Goals Allowed – The Azkals allowed a total of three Goals in three games, which is worst than Singapore and Thailand who only allowed two Goals in the same number of games. In this metric, Indonesia was actually the worst after allowing seven Goals in three games.
    Continue reading

AZKALS 2016 SUZUKI CUP GAME THREE: Azkals 0, Thailand 1

Well, as expected, the Azkals lost to Thailand. I was still sort of hoping otherwise before this game, there was a lot of hype about it, there was even a call to arms by Azkals fans to go to the Philippine Sports Stadium (PSC) in Bulacan to show support for the team.

An acquaintance who is an avid Football fan even asked me on Facebook about it, he went but I just opted to watch the game on TV. And the Azkals fans were out in force tonight, filling the lower stands of the PSC which I think is about as good as it will get for that stadium and for the Azkals in this country.

’Game Play’
The team started very shakily when Coach Thomas Dooley opted to rest some players after two hard games and put in some young players instead like Kenshiro Daniels and Marco Casambre, a teenager playing for Global FC.
Continue reading

How to Appreciate Football for Basketball Fans

Photo courtesy of the Clipartbest website.
Photo courtesy of the Clipartbest website.

So, if you are a Basketball fan, a game where scores comes in droves, how do you appreciate Football, which is the exact opposite of Basketball where the scores rarely reaches double figures for both squads?

Well, it’s a matter of perspective. First of all, it helps if you are rooting for a team because then you will be more invested in how they will do. That investment in turn will make the game feel more exciting to watch.
Continue reading

Azkals vs. Malay Tigers, March 1, 2014

March 1, 2014 at the MPS Stadium in Selayang, Malaysia for the Azkals’ first International Friendly and first game for 2014, and also its first game under new Head Coach Thomas Dooley: The Azkals Draw with Malay Tigers, 0-0.

‘Active Azkals Players’
(Goalkeeper) – Patrick Deyto
(Defenders) – Rob Gier, Jeffrey Christiaens, Juani Guirado, Simone Rota
(Midfielders) – Chris Greatwich, Andrew Liauw, Mark Hartmann, Misagh Bahadoran
(Forwards) – Phil Younghusband, Ruben Doctora
(Substitutes) – Jason De Jong, Patrick Reichelt, Marwin Angeles, Anton Del Rosario, OJ Porteria

‘Game Summary’
We just can’t seem to beat this team as we now have three straight Draws with them, but then maybe it’s not really that bad considering how big Football is in Malaysia, like this match for example filling the 11k capacity stadium. Despite the nil-nil scoreline, this was a pretty exciting game because a lot of good chances, good saves, near misses and nifty-passing on both sides.
Continue reading

Watching Football at the Emperador Stadium, January 16, 2014

After almost a year, I was able to watch another United Football League (UFL) game live at the Emperador Stadium on Thursday, January 16, 2014. The games on hand were between Philippine Army – General Trias FC and Team Socceroo FC, and then between Green Archers United FC and PSG FC. Here are my experience and observations on how it was like.

‘Getting There’
The first pleasant surprise I got when I reached McKinley Hill was the number of signs pointing to the Emperador Stadium. As soon as you start going down the Upper McKinley Road (the main road in the area), you immediately see a series of signs pointing to where the Emperador Stadium is. This is a sharp contrast to my previous experience last year wherein there were NO signs at all indicating the location of the stadium. So now even if it is your first time to go there, it is as easy as pie, just use your eyes to look for the signs, they are there, and follow the directions.

If I remember it right there are probably at least eight signs from the main road all the way to the stadium. I think if it were possible to lay bread crumbs along the road they probably would have, but these signs nevertheless do a FANTASTIC job of leading first timers to where the stadium us. Here is a sample of one of those signs:
Sign to Emperador
Continue reading

Azkals vs. United Arab Emirates, November 9, 2013

November 9, 2013 at the Zayed Sports City Stadium in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates for an Azkals’ International Friendly game: The Azkals lose to the United Arab Emirates, 4-0.

‘Active Azkals Players’
(Goalkeeper) – Ed Sacapano
(Defenders) – Rob Gier, Jeffrey Christiaens, Juani Guirado, Ray Jonsson
(Midfielders) – Chris Greatwich, Jerry Lucena, Anghel Guirado, James Younghusband
(Forwards) – Phil Younghusband, Patrick Reichelt
(Substitutes) – Marwin Angeles, OJ Porteria, Mark Hartmann, Chieffy Caligdong

‘Game Summary’
It was obvious from the first few minutes of the game that there is a large difference in the skill level of the the two teams. UAE played like your typical Middle East team in that they play an up tempo type of game with very sharp technical skills. It was one touch passing all around, like the ball was connected to the players with a string and they just keep bouncing it around off each other. They took a total of 13 shots on goal in the first half, scoring twice in the first 30 minutes of the game.
Continue reading

Azkals vs. Pakistan Shaheens, October 15, 2013

October 15, 2013 at the Panaad Stadium in Bacolod, Philippines for the Azkals’ final game in the 2013 Peace Cup, this one against Pakistan: The Azkals win over the Shaheens, 3-1, thereby winning the Peace Cup for the 2nd year in a row.

‘Active Azkals Players’
(Goalkeeper) – Neil Etheridge
(Defenders) – Rob Gier, Jeffrey Christiaens, Juani Guirado, Jerry Barbaso
(Midfielders) – Chris Greatwich, Jerry Lucena, Misagh Bahadoran, James Younghusband
(Forwards) – Stephan Schrock, Patrick Reichelt
(Substitutes) – Anghel Guirado, OJ Porteria, Mark Hartmann, Phil Younghusband

‘Game Summary’
Pakistan showed some nifty passing plays, with one eventually resulting in the opening goal. Somebody from the right flicks a pass to the middle, who after 1 or 2 touches then makes a thru ball thru several defenders leaving the receiving player only to deal with Jerry Barbaso and Neil Etheridge. A fake to the left, switched to right and a volley resulting in the goal.
Continue reading