Angela Beard relishes warm welcome from Filipinas, fans ahead of World Cup debut | Inquirer Sports

Angela Beard relishes warm welcome from Filipinas, fans ahead of World Cup debut

/ 09:13 PM July 11, 2023

Angela Beard philippines fifa world cup

Philippine women’s football team defender Angela Beard #26. –FILIPINAS PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—The Filipinas have unveiled the Final 23 women to compete in the 2023 Fifa Women’s World Cup including key defender Angela Beard.

Beard, who has represented Australia in international competition teams several times, made the decision to join the Filipinas, thanks in large part to his connection with coach Alen Stajcic.

Beard said she has known Stajcic when she was just a teenager, making the jump to the Philippines a little bit easier.

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“I’ve known (coach)  Staj for a little while now. I think we met when I was 16, 17 or 18 and he’s a great coach. He left a great impression on me and a big factor as to why I came over here to the Philippines,” she said in an interview posted by the Philippine Women’s National Football Team on Facebook.

Since being appointed as the Filipinas’ head tactician in 2021, Stajcic has steered the country to numerous historical wins.

A year after his appointment, Stajcic did the unthinkable and mentored the Filipinas en route to their 2023 World Cup qualification after a win over Chinese Taipei in the Women’s Asian Cup.

AT HOME

Angela Beard philippines fifa world cup

–FILIPINAS PHOTO

However, it was not just Stajcic who made a good impression on the defender. The team, as a whole, has already welcomed Beard.

“I feel like I’ve made a lot of strong friendships and a lot of good connections (here). The girls are not only talented footballers but they’re very welcoming and friendly,” said Beard, whose mother hails from Cebu.

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“The fan base and the Philippines have really accepted me and supported me in a way that makes me feel valued and respected as a player and I’m really excited to be here.”

Joining Beard in the pool of Philippine defenders for the Fifa Woen’s World Cup are Jessika Cowart, Dominique Randle, Sofia Harrison, Malea Cesar, Alicia Barker and Reina Bonta.

Beard and the Filipinas, who arrived in New Zealand on Monday, will face Sweden in a training match on July 17 before facing the Swiss booters for the Fifa opener in Dunedin.

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TAGS: Angela Beard, Philippine women’s football team

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