MANILA, Philippines—Goalkeeper Ed Sacapaño was brilliant all match long as the Philippines tripped Singapore, 1-0, in a Fifa-sanctioned friendly Thursday night in Cebu.
This is the last match before the Azkals fly for the 2012 AFF Suzuki Cup, the same tournament where football’s rise to stardom in the country started two years ago, late in November.
Substitute Marwin Angeles pulled one back in the 54th minute, connecting with Patrick Reichelt off a delivery by Phil Younghusband for the Azkals lone goal.
But it was Sacapaño’s toughness and impeccable timing on the goal that kept the Lions from barging into the scoreboard.
One of Sacapaño’s many timely saves came just before halftime whistle, when Singapore was awarded a penalty kick.
The Azkals have just gained the lead over the Lions in their head-to-head match the past years.
The last three these two teams met—previous to Thursday’s match—both teams notched a victory each and drew once.
Singapore was more aggressive on the attack, with more attempts and shot on goals—but could not convert, and most was collected by Sacapaño.
In the 75th minute, Singapore had another solid attempt and one of their best chances to score for the night—but Sacapaño came up with a glorious save.
Sacapaño’s performance came at a perfect time just when rumors of first choice keeper Neil Etheridge not being available for the Suzuki Cup floated.
Originally posted at 09:32 pm | Thursday, November 15, 2012