PH women’s football team hopes to continue to inspire in bid for World Cup berth
MANILA, Philippines—The Philippines women’s football team is holding its head held high heading into its Group B match against Indonesia on Thursday in the 2022 AFC Women’s Asian Cup.
Another win for the Filipinos puts them in a solid position to advance to the quarterfinals which brings them closer for a shot at the 2023 Fifa Women’s World Cup.
“They’re at the forefront now, and they’re on the precipice of being able to do that (qualify for the FIFA Women’s World Cup) but there’s a lot of hard work to be done between now and qualifying,” said head coach Allen Stajcic.
The Filipinos showed their identity and grit in two tough matches against Thailand and powerhouse Australi and this just the attitude Stajcic wants his players to show not only to him but to the Filipinos watching them.
“Hopefully we can give the Philippines and all the players back home – young boys and young girls – some inspiration and hope that they can play at FIFA World Cups in the future,” said Stajcic, whose team sits at second in the group behind Australia.
“The players in the squad want to change the game back home. They want to be inspirational to the next generation and they’ve spoken about that often.”
The Philippines started its campaign with a gutsy 1-0 win over Southeast Asian tormentor Thailand and held its own against Australia before losing 4-0, with all four goals conceded in the second half.
Stajcic added that his team hasn’t been in full strength due to injuries and COVID-19 issues.
“We did have some injuries (against Australia). Our first two keepers were both injured, Kristina Guillou, we could only bring on for a little bit at the end. She had a little niggle and couldn’t get through the whole game,” said Stajcic.
“They’re a couple of key players and we also have some COVID issues as well. We weren’t at full strength, which shows how impressive the performance was.”