Philippines bunched with Australia in AFC Women’s Asian Cup
MANILA, Philippines—The Philippine women’s national football team was drawn into an interesting group in the 2022 AFC Women’s Asian Cup that includes two Southeast Asian neighbors and one international powerhouse.
In a ceremony held in Kuala Lumpur on Thursday, the Philippines was bundled with world no.11 Australia, and also familiar nations Thailand and Indonesia in group B of the competition that will be played from January 20 to February 6.
The country is ranked no.68 in the world while Thailand is at no.39 with Indonesia at no.92.
Alen Stajcic, who previously coached Australia, will be manning the Philippines’ side.
— The Philippine Football Federation (@philfootball) October 28, 2021
The 47-year-old was one of Australia’s more successful coaches having led the Matildas to the 2015 and 2019 World Cup and also the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Meanwhile, AFC Cup 2021 champion Australia is stacked with talent from England’s FA Women’s Super League that includes captain Sam Kerr of Chelsea, Kyah Simon of Tottenham Hotspur, Caitlin Foord of Arsenal, Tameka Yallop of West Ham as forwards and midfielders.
The Matildas also have defenders Alanna Kennedy of Manchester City and Steph Catley of Arsenal, and goalkeepers Mackenzie Arnold of West Ham and Lydia Williams also of Arsenal.
Host nation India is in Group A with China, Taiwan, and Iran while Group C has Japan, South Korea, Vietnam, and Myanmar.
The top two teams in each group, as well as two of the best third placers, will advance to the knockout quarterfinals.
Teams will be competing to get the five slots to the 2023 Fifa Women’s World Cup that Australia and New Zealand will be co-hosting.