Ceres-La Salle tackles Maziya XI in Maldives | Inquirer Sports
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Ceres-La Salle tackles Maziya XI in Maldives

By: - Reporter / @cedelfptINQ
/ 01:40 AM February 15, 2015

NATIONAL team players Juani Guirado, Manny Ott, Patrick Reichelt and Martin Steuble left the Maldives with a heavy heart in May last year following the Azkals’ loss to Palestine in the AFC Challenge Cup.

They’re hoping for a positive ending this time when they suit up for Bacolod-based side Ceres-La Salle FC in an AFC Cup playoff with Maldives side Maziya on Feb. 17 in Male.

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“We’re excited to go to the Maldives again, but it’s important we accomplish what we’re there for,” said Reichelt, who scored two goals in the Challenge Cup.

Bolstered by new acquisitions, Ceres-La Salle hopes to break into the group stage of the prestigious AFC Cup for the first time. The winner of the playoff will join Group E together with India’s Bengaluru, Indonesia’s Persipura Jayapura and Warriors FC of Singapore.

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“We will be playing against a club that has played in the AFC Cup for three straight years,” said club director Ali Go. “But we are ready and the team is raring to make the country proud.”

More importantly, Go said making the group stage of the tournament will give Ceres a chance to bring the tournament to Bacolod as the team will be assured of three home matches.

“Win or lose, this is a milestone for football in the country and we will work extra hard,” Go said.

Ceres already has experience in continental competitions having played in the AFC President’s Cup qualifying round last year.

Global FC, as UFL league champion, already has a seat in the group stage. The squad of Dan Palami will start its campaign on Feb. 25 against Hong Kong side South China at Rizal Memorial Stadium.

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TAGS: Ceres-La Salle, Juani Guirado, Maldives, Patrick Reichelt
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