Next 2 months crucial for draw as Filipinas stay at No. 53
The next two months will be a crucial time for the Philippines if it wants to be in a position to put up at least a good showing in next year’s Fifa Women’s World Cup.
Maintaining their hold at No. 53 in the latest women’s football world rankings released on Friday, the Filipinas hope to capitalize on the next two international windows that will come before the World Cup draw takes place in late October.
Philippine Football Federation president Nonong Araneta had earlier said that the country is currently in pot four, thus putting the Filipinas in the likelihood of being in a tough situation against fancied opponents.
For that to be avoided, Araneta said that the Philippines will have to jump eight spots higher in order to be placed in pot three. Jumping to a higher pot in the draw means the country can eliminate one more higher ranked squad from its group.
Plans are for the country to face highly-ranked opponents in hopes of improving its position before Fifa releases the next edition of its rankings on Oct. 13, nine days before the World Cup draw in Auckland, New Zealand.
A pair of friendlies against No. 22 Costa Rica will happen during the October window while matches with New Zealand, Jamaica and Uzbekistan are being planned.
Having played nine matches since the previous rankings were released in June—majority of which came during the title run in the Asean Football Federation (AFF) Women’s Championship, the Filipinas increased to 1,479.91 points.
But that did not result in any movement in the Philippines’ ranking, which is still the country’s highest ever.
It is also the 11th best among countries under the Asian Football Confederation, with Southeast Asian neighbors Vietnam at No. 33 and Thailand at No. 41.
The Philippines beat both countries on its way to claiming the AFF crown on home soil.