PH WOMEN’S FOOTBALL TEAM BOUND TO INDIA FOR AFC WOMEN’S ASIAN CUP
Philippine national women’s football team is now headed to India for the AFC Women's Asian Cup after wrapping up its camp in Irvine, California.
The Philippine representatives ended their two-month training camp in Irvine, California as their preparations for their campaign in the continental tiff, where five slots to the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 are at stake.
“The Philippine Women’s National Team wrapped up a productive two-month camp in Irvine, California in preparation for the AFC Women’s Asian Cup in India,” the Philippine Football Federation (PFF) wrote in a post showing a photo of the squad ahead of their departure.
“We wish the team a safe journey to Mumbai with more than a week remaining before the first match against Thailand on Jan. 21,” it added.
The Filipinas are playing in the Women’s Asian Cup for a second straight time since 2018 where they missed out on the 2019 World Cup after losing to South Korea, 5-0, in the fifth-place match.
“I’ve got a lot of hope and a lot of belief that we can actually achieve the goal. The players are all aligned and driven to succeed as one and that’s what we have to do to give ourselves every possible chance of getting one of those spots for the World Cup,” new head coach Alen Stajcic opined.
Midfielder Tahnai Annis will carry the role of the skipper as she leads the 23 women that are tapped by the PFF to represent the country in India.
Included in the roster are goalkeepers Inna Palacios, Kiara Fontanilla, and Olivia Davies McDaniel along with defenders Dominique Randle, Tara Shelton, Hali Long, Kristen Bugay, Morgan Brown, Isabella Flanigan, Sofia Harrison, and Katrina Guillou.
Alongside Annis in the midfield are Malea Cesar, Camille Rodriguez, Jessica Miclat, Anicka Castaneda, Sara Castañeda, and Keanne Alamo; and forwards Chandler McDaniel, Carleigh Frilles, Sarina Bolden, Eva Madarang, and Quinely Quezada.
The Philippines will kick off their continental campaign against Thailand on January 21 at the D.Y. Patil Stadium, Navi Mumbai, then they will face Australia on January 24 at the Mumbai Football Arena before wrapping up their group stage against Indonesia on January 27 at the Shri Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex.
The Filipinas will test their mettle as only the top two teams of each group, along with the two best third-placers, will advance to the knockout stage.