Convincing victory for Araneta
Mariano “Nonong” Araneta promised improvements in running the affairs of the Philippine Football Federation (PFF) as well as more corporate support for youth tournaments, following his reelection as the country’s top football official on Friday during the 16th PFF Congress in Manila.
Araneta, who ran unopposed in 2011 and 2015, survived a challenging campaign period and beat Negros Occidental Football Association (Nofa) president Ricky Yanson, 23-12, for the post.
Immediately extending his hand in reconciliation to Yanson, Araneta had lamented what he termed as “vicious attacks” on his character in the lead up to the elections.
But Araneta said his final term will be better than ever as he plans to see through key projects that will boost the development of the game in the country.
“Rest assured, we will do better and we will move on as one,” Araneta said. “I enjoin everyone to unite for the good of Philippine football. I am extending my hand to my opponent so we can bring football further in the country.”
Araneta reportedly had huge support from the vote-rich Mindanao bloc, led by his running mate M’lang Cotabato mayor Joselito Piñol, who was also reelected as vice president.
Another key to Araneta’s reelection was the support of three Philippines Football League (PFL) clubs in Ceres-Negros FC, Kaya-Iloilo and Stallion Laguna, which were able to secure voting rights after their membership to the PFF was approved earlier during the Congress.
“I’m happy that most of the members here believe in my ability as they trusted me for another four-year term,” said Araneta, who also sits in the Fifa executive committee as well as the AFC finance committee.
Araneta said his four-year plan for the federation will include more infrastructure with the impending completion of the National Training Center in Carmona, Cavite.