Saturday, August 15, 2015
Philippine Azkals face Maldives to prepare for FIFA World Cup qualifiers
The Philippine national men’s football team will get much-needed competition from an old foe in its preparations for its match against Uzbekistan in the FIFA World Cup qualifiers in September.
The 125th-ranked Azkals will play the 175th-ranked Maldives in a friendly match on September 3, 8:00 pm at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.
The match will serve as a buildup for the Azkals’ crucial match against Uzbekistan, ranked 76th in the world, on September 8 at the Philippine Arena in Bulacan in the World Cup qualifiers.
The Azkals and the Maldives last faced off in a memorable encounter in the Asian Football Confederation Challenge Cup last year where the two squads battled in an epic semifinal match before the Filipinos escaped with a 3-2 win.
The Azkals currently have a flawless record in Group H of the FIFA World Cup qualifiers after wins over Bahrain and Yemen. They are tied with North Korea atop of their bracket.
The Filipinos are trying to score another big win at the expense of Uzbekistan which had been seeded No.1 in the group but failed to live up to expectations after opening its campaign with a 4-2 loss to North Korea.