Filipinas U-17 stay in hunt for Asian Cup slot
MANILA, Philippines–The Philippines kept its hopes of making the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U-17 Women’s Asian Cup after a 3-1 win over Bangladesh in the second round of the qualification phase held Friday in Hanoi, Vietnam.
Nina Mathelus continued her goalscoring ways before a late score from Jelena Soon sealed the Filipinas U-17’s victory that turned their final group match against host Vietnam on Sunday into a virtual knockout for the final Asian Cup slot.
Both teams have three points apiece going into their 7 p.m. local time (8 p.m. Manila time) duel at Vietnam Youth Football Training Center.
Coached by senior team assistant Sinisha Cohadzic, the Filipinas U-17 will look to join seven others in next year’s continental tournament which will be hosted by Indonesia.
“Win is needed. We recover, prepare, analyze and DARE TO DREAM of first time qualifying to Asian Cup on junior level of football,” Cohadzic posted on X, the social media app formerly known as Twitter.
The Filipinas U-17 dropped their opening assignment in Group B against Australia, 6-2, last Wednesday after taking a two-goal lead early courtesy of Mathelus.
Isabella Preston put the Philippines ahead three minutes after kickoff but it took mere seconds for Bangladesh to equalize behind Mst Sagorika.
Mathelus scored her third goal of the second round, and seventh for the duration of the qualification phase in the 32nd as the Filipinas U-17 were able to take control.
A third goal came from Soon five minutes into the second-half stoppage time to prevent any chance of Bangladesh to steal a point.