Below are my notes for the United Football League (UFL) games televised on AKTV 13 on Saturday, October 22, 2011, starting at 2:00 pm.
‘Stallions FC routs Cebu Queen United FC, 8-0’
Everytime I look at that scoreline, I can’t help but smile a bit. That’s because I remember a recent article by Mike Limpag where the people behind the Cebu team was talking about forming a Cebu division of the UFL, and even bragging about how perhaps the winning team could participate in the AFC’s Pan-Asian club competitions.
By the way they got beaten, I think they should be thankful that those plans did not push thru. LOL. Now, I understand that this Cebu team was only organized a couple of weeks earlier, but this is supposed to be an All-Star squad, so even if they lost, they are not expected to be completely blown off the pitch this way. In two games, they conceded around 13 goals, while scoring NONE. They have not even scored a goal in the UFL thus far.
Attendance in the first game was not good, only a couple of dozen people in the stands. Kim Dae Woo scored a Hat Trick for the Stallions, too bad his interview did not push thru due to technical issues with his headset and microphone. Again, some teething issues about the coverage.
Ruben Doctora scored a brace, that guy really seems to be a scoring machine, one of the more prolific players goal-wise in the Philippines. He was the highest goal scorer in the 2011 PFF Smart Interclub championships with six goals, and he is continuing that goal-scoring trend into the UFL. He’s got decent ballhandling skills, patient and excellent composure, and accurate with his shots.
Both teams started out sluggishly, perhaps conscious of the fact that the game was televised, but slowly but surely the Stallions gained their composure, and started dominating the attack with their excellent passing game.
‘Phoenix Air Force FC beats Philippine Navy FC, 6-2’
The game started promisingly enough, with lots of great offensive and defensive action on both sides. Really quality game, nice, challenging shots on goal, and excellent saves by both goalkeepers. The Philippine Navy team showed a lot of quality with their neat passing game and build up plays. However, their problem is that they did not have what the Air Force team had, and that is the attacking “Unholy Trinity” of Azkals (former and active) Ian Araneta, Chieffy Caligdong and Yanti Barsales. And true enough, all three scored at least a goal in this game.
The game actually was pretty close, until Ian scored the opening goal, and then followed up by another goal by Chieffy. Both players ended up with a Brace in this game, and those two first goals sort of knocked the wind out of the Navy men. After that, Air Force started dominating possession and attempts, eventually turning the game into a rout.
Air Force played a more up-tempo type of game, with the Unholy Trinity leading the attack. The rest of the team seems to know their places well, always looking out in support of these three leading players who they know can effectively finish their runs and score goals.
Navy did show their quality by scoring two goals within five minutes of each other in the end game, preserving some of their pride by preventing a shutout. Attendance in the second game seemed to have improved by a couple of dozen more people.
Blow outs on this game day, I felt the winning teams were motivated to be as impressive as possible due to the fact that the games were televised. And in that regard, the teams succeeded, especially in the second game, where I was expecting a close game, but which ended up as a runaway win for Phoenix Air Force FC.
I didn’t appreciate the post game of the second game being cut off, leaving out the highlights and interviews. The screen sort of froze, so perhaps the Rizal Memorial team again had some technical problems. Just too bad, would’ve been nice to watch those goals again in slow motion, and also to hear some of the players.