Philippines misses Suzuki Cup finals


Philippines player Angel Guirado (left) and Singapore player Shaiful Esah fight for the ball during the AFF Suzuki Cup semi-final in Singapore on Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2012. AFP PHOTO/ROSLAN RAHMAN

MANILA, Philippines—Philippines fell to Singapore, 0-1, Wednesday night and missed a golden chance to advance to the finals of the 2012 AFF Suzuki Cup at the Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore.

The Azkals yielded a goal in the 19th minute when Khairul Amri was rewarded on a long range effort as the fierce Lions went on attack mode from the kick-off.

Singapore registered only its first victory over the Philippines this year—but it came at the best time as the Lions clinched a spot in the final, winning 1-0 on aggregate in the home-and-away semifinals.

Philippines and Singapore settled for a scoreless standoff in the first leg in Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila on Saturday.

The Lions pounced on the Azkals’ lousy defending in the first half, and even almost doubled the lead 12 minutes after that.

Singapore goal keeper Izwan Mahbud also had a remarkable performance keeping a clean sheet for the Lions.

The Azkals did not have enough chances in the second half to score a goal, which—even with a 1-1 scoreline—would have carried them to the finals due to the away goal rule.

Phil Younghusband—playing with a target on his back all match—had a good chance in the 42nd minute but could not finish.

Philippines also yielded to Indonesia in the semis of the same tournament two years ago.

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  • peteryang47

    The Final will be between Singapore and Thailand, Two of the most early and well planned   prepared teams showed that early preparation along with good planning contributed to their success of their respective teams  in reaching the final
    Take a look at your present  team and the 2010 squad, Most of the present players in this 2012 squad are new faces in this 2012 Suzuki Cup, Do study on Youtube and hear the interviews on  what the Singaporean coach said prior to the second leg semi final. He mentioned, They are WELL PREPARED AND RESTED WELL. The key word is RESTED WELL., and  i feels that Philippines played one too many friendlies  specially the away. It has been a long season, where players has to divide themselves between national duty and clubs commitments  also the away training camps  amount of time spent on jet lag. which I think the Philippines squad spent the most time staying up in the air of having to play more friendlies, participating in more tournaments than the rests finally took the toll on the players on the crucial moments when they were needed to be at their best, Part of good planning is Rest time as well.  
    Another Good example is Malaysia, They did not give priority to have early preparation to defend the cup after having won in 2010, and it was only somewhere early mid this year that they started to prepare the squad and even the Bukit Jalil Stadium were still doing a mad rush of  last minute touch up prior to  the opening day match, Ridiculous. It shows how late they start to get prepared while teams like Thailand and Singapore were already preparing much in advance. 
    The final push wasn’t there anymore in the Philippines team when the 1st leg of the semi final that was played in Manila. Intl tournaments require endurance on  both physical  and mental strength  Resting  well is utmost important as it helps to keep the players fresh and sustain their forms,The tiredness showed in the team in the 1st leg as they failed to take advantage to command at least a goal lead to bring to Singapore for the return leg, Noticed how crucial if both teams like Philippines and Malaysia had commanded of an at least a goal lead, Both return matches in their respective opponents turf could had made a difference, Both teams that reach the final were well prepared and both took a point off on their opponents home turf in the first leg of the semi finals. I noticed Philippines opt for almost experience over youth in the Suzuki Cup, The Malaysian coach swab his squad after the embarrassing opening match loss to Singapore by taking off some of the seniors and brought in some of the juniors and they played throughout the entire campaign. Different coaches has different methods, For me I would blend both experience and youth, Experience to guide the youths and youths have stronger legs to assist and sustain the campaign, Notice Singapore mix experience and youth in the team as well, Same goes to Thailand. The Philippines team has one of the best rated defense and midfield but it was their lack  in finishing that cost them a berth in the final. In soccer 50% is already won when you control the match and the other 50% is all about putting the ball into our opponent net. Singapore worked out a perfect plan in their set piece, ( again study the video replay on Youtube ). they had one player behind your two man wall as the free kick is about to be taken, Duric acted as a decoy cos they know your players will keep a close eyes on him, so they pushed him up whenever a freekick is given to their favor. Thus your players failed to noticed their ploy, which in this case was Amir who  is their target  to get the goal ( not Duric and others in the box ) , was standing behind the defense wall with no one marking him. I had mentioned before to be wary of  Singapore as they play intelligent soccer . But Philippines can take heart from this campaign as many are already giving good comments and giving due  respect to the Philippines team, Everyone has good words for the Philippines team and it’s the truth. Do you know that your brand of football won many admirers abroad even among my country fellowmen? You are no longer the whipping boys but indeed a strong contenders and rightfully deserved to be. Thank you Philippines for giving us the new breathe of football and You will get the Cup some day in near future. So keep on playing the beautiful game. and Merry Christmas and a Blessed new year 2013 to everyone.Time for me to bid farewell,as I sign off my final posting here, Until then God bless each and everyone. Thank you

  • ShineMother

    Di bale may mga susunod na taon pa. Paghandaan niyo nalang yung AFP qualifying tournament next year.
    ~Bakit nga pala everytime na mapunta kay Guirado yung bola eh binu-boo siya ng mga Singaporean? Hindi kaya inis sa kanya yung mga tao dun dahil sa pag-arte niya?

  • binatangtagabukid

    phil goes down easily DIVER 

  • PCD_2012

    The management of Azkals must offer the team’s sponsorship to the highest bidder that will take good care of the development of the whole team!

    Only the Philippine team is always changing its lineup whenever they are going for a game.  Why, because they can’t afford to get their best players to stay till their campaign is over!

    The management must give their players something to be proud off which is to have better perks in order for them to give their full time loyalty to the team!

    The Azkals is more bankable than any PBA teams but what they get is just a small fraction of what the PBA players are receiving! 

    • billy gunner

       pba sucks! oh and it sucks bigtime!

  • pubringjuandelacruz

    Next year will be a different kind of ballgame. the team should realize what their flaws. mental toughness is one of the team’s weakness other than that we are solid and a force to reckon with. 
    God bless to to Azkals! you’re one hella team! 

    • Jao Romero

      i agree. they play better when there is no pressure. idk what happened to Phil and James, but they have been terrible in this tournament. idk why it took Weiss until this last game to put in Omphroy for James. James has had the worst performance of his career. after the first game in the group stages, he should have been taken out of the starting line up. Phil rebounded in the next games of the group stages, but in the semifinals, he really hasn’t produced much. they’ve been bodying him up and roughing him up the moment he touches the ball. it’s been tough for Phil this tourney.

      the brothers missing so many of the preparatory friendlies also resulted in so many misplays between the midfield and the forwards. Angel and James especially have had so many miscues with each other. a result of both never having played together for months before this tourney.

      our attack just sputters because the midfielders can’t serve the ball to the forwards. either they give it up on unforced turnovers or they try a 1-2 pass play but the other player isn’t expecting it. just obvious lack of chemistry plagued our offense. our defense on the whole has been stalwart. but our midfield play was really lacking. i wondered why Matt Uy got cut. he held midfield really well in the friendlies. he does have the tendency to get tired around the 60 minute mark, making more mistakes as the game goes longer. but he’s really been great at settling down that ball and holding midfield together.

      also, i still can’t believe we have wingers that can’t serve a decent cross. ball control is also a severe problem. as is winning balls on the air. our height is wasted if we can’t win that battle. players also don’t seem to value ball possession that much. giving away the ball cheaply as if they haven’t been spending all that time trying to get possession of the ball. it’s the one thing really frustrating to watch. the team chasing around the ball for 20 minutes and when they finally gain possession, they kick it away right into the enemy keeper’s hands. i mean WTF? i can understand if there’s some pressure coming right at the them and they need to clear the ball. but the opponents have sagged off and they have all the time in the world to choose whom to pass to and the first thing they do is pump an overhead long ball so far ahead of our forwards that we effectively lose possession – AGAIN.

      this 2nd leg was better. but too little too late. their habit of coming out with urgency only at the 2nd half finally bit them back in the tush. if they just played like that (2nd half of 2nd leg semifinal) all the time, instead of waiting until their backs are against the wall, it’ll be a habit to them. they must make that kind of play style a habit. kaya naman pala nilang maglaro ng passing game eh, bat di nila magawa all the time?

      excellence is a habit. you can’t have an on and off switch for excellence. you must give your best every time to have a winning culture.

      • Lemuel Vargas

        Well, as they say, better luck next time and practice, practice and practice some more. There is a saying that goes practice makes perfect..

      • pubringjuandelacruz

        could agree with you more!!! it takes time to excel on something. just like you said, excellence is a habit. to have a habit you have to do it all the time. but in the world of sports there will always be winners and losers. maybe (just maybe) we can define or draw a thin line what “excellence” is. we could have an excellent game plan, excellent players, excellent management and coaching staff, but that does not guarantee that we always win. sabi nga nila “bilog ang bola”.

        good observations! and oh! about james younghusband, dunno what happen to him. his always in a different world. In this game, he can’t even get passed his defenders and provide a good cross to create opportunity to the strikers. whats up with that!

    • CmdrAdobo

      I like Chiefy’s never say attitude.

      So many things that we need to improve. Our players should focus the game and not on cheating.

      I dont understand why our players tumbled so easily, like Phil and Angel Guirado.

      Just my objective observation.


  • Noel

    I never expected Singapore fans to throw bottles at out players as they exited.  Singapore already won and did not have to do that.  We never did that to them in Manila.  Our few Filipino fans could not do anything because most of them were domestic helpers.  How could they go against their bosses who might also be watching?

    • JC JC

      …..and that’s Singaporean hospitality and sportsmanship, extreme rudeness and civility despite its affluence….what’s the use of being a 1st world country when its people have rubbish characters. what a way to treat visitors like that !!!

      • sharkbaitt

         i have seen a series of comments made by singaporeans to Filipino’s and believe me, you don’t want to see that, they thought of Filipino as rats, trash, whore and all nasty things, because of Filipino Professionals who are taking higher position in their puny islands. If not with the British they have been swallowed by Malaysia, no surprise them acting like that, they only have money but they are no way near the goodness and hospitality of Filipinos, by the way its a fascist country.

      • Juan

        Let the Singaporeans flatter themselves. It hides their insecurities anyway. They are afraid of the Indonesians in the south and Malaysians in the north. How many times have Singaporean motorists been extorted by Malaysian cops and how many times have they been mugged in KL with the Malaysian police turning a blind eye on their complaints? Lee Kuan Yew doesn’t even have the balls to offend the Malaysians who can cut Singapore’s supply of petrol, water, food and labour anytime.

      • sharkbaittt

        precisely, what can you expect from a modern country who condones caning? they are boasting about their military capabilities and 1 million strong armed forces, their soldier ask his maid to carry his bag for him, it makes me laugh…

      • CmdrAdobo

        You know, some people cant handle success. Have you heard a person with ‘new money’. These people are too noisy and arrogant. Developed country but the citizens have no class at all.

      • Juan

        With the depletion of local talent in Singapore because of its rapid decline in population, I’d sit back and relax. The Singaporeans’ penchant for glorifying themselves will soon come to an end, and probably, it will be sooner than we expect.

    • CmdrAdobo

      Okay na sana information mo bro. Pero mali yung sinabi mo na  ‘most of them were domestic helpers’. I am not sure kung nakapunta ka ng singapore. Do you think domestic helpers can watch football on weekdays? 

      Pero kung ikaw ang nandoon, what can you do about it? Makipag suntukan ka?

    • IA

      Pinoy bosses? Please, don’t flatter yourselves.

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