The Philippines national football team is the national football team of the Philippines and represents the country in international football. The team is controlled by the Philippine Football Federation (PFF), the governing body of football in the Philippines.
Despite being one of the oldest national teams in Asia, the Philippines has yet to qualify for the Asian Cup or the World Cup. However, they enjoyed some success in its early years between 1913 and 1934 in the Far Eastern Championship Games.
HistoryIn September 2006 the country fell to 195th on the FIFA World Rankings, its lowest ever. By the end of the year, the Philippines moved back up to 171st overall, after a good run in the 2007 ASEAN Football Championship qualification. They were able to win three games in a row which was a first for the Philippines and thus qualifying for the 2007 ASEAN Football Championship. Coach at that time Aris Caslib, aimed to reach the semi-finals with two wins at the group stage. The decision came despite Philippine Football Federation president Juan Miguel Romualdez stating that they would still be underdogs in the tournament and that they mustn't raise their expectations too high, as the Philippines have only won their first ever win of the tournament during the 2004 edition.
The Philippines eventually failed to reach their target, only getting a draw in three matches. Their poor performances led to Caslib's resignation, as well as the refusal of the PFF to register and enter the qualification stages for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. They would be one of four nations, all from Southeast Asia not to enter after a record number of entries. However it was revealed that the decision not to enter the 2010 as well as the 2006 World Cup qualification was made during the PFF presidency of Rene Adad, whose term ended in 2003. Instead, the PFF wanted to focus on domestic and regional competitions.
Since 2007, the Philippines have failed to qualify for a major competition. They came close in 2008 after missing out on the 2008 AFC Challenge Cup only on goal difference, and the 2008 AFF Suzuki Cup with an inferior goals scored record. In 2010, they qualified for the 2010 AFF Suzuki Cup, where they stayed undefeated in the group stage and also went on to beat defending champions Vietnam, becoming one of the biggest upsets in the history of the tournament. The team reached the knockout stage for the first time, eventually losing to Indonesia in the semifinals. In 2011, the Philippines qualified for the AFC Challenge Cup for the first time since qualifiers were introduced in the tournament.
On July 3, 2011, the Philippines recorded their first ever victory in FIFA World Cup qualification, beating Sri Lanka 4–0 in the second leg of the first preliminary round. They advanced 5–1 on aggregate, drawing 1–1 in the first leg before winning at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.
On March 11, 2012, the Philippines recorded its first win in the AFC Challenge Cup by defeating previous champions India 2–0 and followed by another victory in March 13, which they won 2–1 against Tajikistan, thus qualifying for the semi-finals for the first time. However, on March 16, 2012, the team suffered a 2–1 defeat against Turkmenistan in their semifinals match. The Philippines made up for their semifinals loss to Turkmenistan by beating Palestine 4–3 to win third place.
On September 29, 2012, the Philippines recorded their third win in the 2012 Philippine Peace Cup. It was also their first title since the 1913 Far Eastern Championship Games.
In November 30, 2012, the team made it to the semi-finals of the 2012 AFF Suzuki Cup.
Team ImageKitIn March 2008, the Philippine Football Federation signed a three-year, ₱9-million contract with Mizuno to become the official outfitter and equipment supplier of the national team, as well as becoming a major partner in its grassroots development programs. The previous outfitter was Adidas.
On June 4, 2012, the Philippine Football Federation signed a three-year agreement with Puma to become the official kit sponsor of the national team. They will be releasing the official long term home and away kits soon in association with Cougar Athletic Trends, with designs said to be comparable to that of Italy and Cameroon and other nations that use Puma as their kit designers.
On November 8, 2012, Philippine Football Federation has release the model jersey of Philippines national football team. The home kit is an all blue kit with white lining while the away kit is an all white with red lining. The goalkeeper kit will have three colors namely, orange with black, grey with blue and black with yellow.
The traditional home kit is similar to the France national team; blue jersey, white shorts, and red socks. However, in recent times, the home and away kit has either been all-blue, all-red or all-white. Currently the home kit is all-blue, while the away kit is all-white.
NamesUnder the official FIFA Trigramme the team's name is abbreviated as PHI; this acronym is used by FIFA, the AFC and the AFF to identify the team in official competitions. The team is also identified under the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) country code for the Philippines as PHL. However the team was more commonly known as the RP, the acronym for the country's official name, Republika ng Pilipinas, which the local press used when they referred to the team as the "RP Booters" or the "RP XI". This was until late October 2010 when the Department of Foreign Affairs decided to change the official abbreviation of the country from "RP" to "PH" or "PHL", to be in line with ISO standards. The local press have since referred to the team as either "PH/PHL Booters" or "PH/PHL XI".
The national team is popularly referred to as the "Azkals". The name was coined when an online Philippine football community proposed the nickname Calle Azul (Spanish forStreets of Blue, referring to the color of their kit) which was modified to Azul Calle, shortened to AzCal, and finally became Azkal – a word that is similar to Filipino term Askalmeaning street dog. “Azkals” became a trending topic on Twitter during the semi-finals of the 2010 AFF Suzuki Cup.
They are also known as the "Tri–Stars" which is derived from the three stars on the Philippine flag, although this nickname is not frequently used.
Home stadiumMain article: Rizal Memorial Stadium
During the early years of the Philippine national team, they played their home matches at the Manila Carnival Grounds. By 1934 it became the site of the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex. One of the facilities within the complex is the 30,000 capacity national stadium, known as the Rizal Memorial Track and Football Stadium or simply the Rizal Memorial Stadium. Since its opening, it has been the home venue of the Philippine national team.
However, it has also become a hub for athletics. The continued use for athletics along with poor maintenance has deteriorated the stadium and the 1991 Southeast Asian Gameswas the last time it was used for international football matches. In early 2009, the Philippine Sports Commission planned to transform it to a modern football stadium which would make it usable by the national team for international matches.
Other stadiums used:
edit]PlayersCurrent squadMatch Date: December 8 & 12, 2012
Competition: 2012 AFF Suzuki Cup Semi-final
No.Pos.PlayerDoB/AgeCapsClub11GKEduard SacapañoFebruary 14, 1980 (age 32) Philippine Army32GKRef CuaresmaOctober 31, 1982 (age 30) Loyola47GKRoland MüllerMarch 2, 1988 (age 24) MSV Duisburg2DFRob GierJanuary 6, 1981 (age 31) Ascot United3DFJason SabioJune 30, 1986 (age 26) Kaya5DFJuan Luis GuiradoAugust 27, 1979 (age 33) Racing Lermeño8DFDennis CagaraFebruary 10, 1985 (age 27) Karlsruher SC14DFCarli de MurgaNovember 30, 1988 (age 24) Global FC27DFRay JónssonFebruary 3, 1979 (age 33) Grindavik7MFJames YounghusbandSeptember 4, 1986 (age 26) Loyola13MFEmelio CaligdongSeptember 28, 1982 (age 30) Philippine Air Force18MFChris GreatwichSeptember 30, 1983 (age 29) Morris County Colonials19MFJerry LucenaAugust 11, 1980 (age 32) Esbjerg21MFJason de JongFebruary 28, 1990 (age 22) Stallion FC22MFPaul MuldersJanuary 16, 1981 (age 31) ADO Den Haag24MFMarwin AngelesJanuary 9, 1991 (age 21) Global FC28MFJeffrey ChristiaensMay 17, 1991 (age 21) Global FC29MFPatrick ReicheltJune 15, 1988 (age 24) Global FC34MFDemitrius OmphroyMay 23, 1989 (age 23) Global FC10FWPhil YounghusbandAugust 4, 1987 (age 25) Loyola12FWÁngel GuiradoDecember 9, 1984 (age 27) Salgaocar20FWDenis WolfJanuary 15, 1983 (age 29) Global FCRecent call-upsThe following players have been called up for the Philippines within the past 12 months.
Pos.PlayerDate of Birth (Age)CapsGoalsClubLatest Call-upGKNeil EtheridgeFebruary 7, 1990 (age 22) Fulhamv. Kuwait, October 16, 2012GKPatrick DeytoFebruary 15, 1990 (age 22) Green Archers Unitedv. Guam, June 12, 2012DFDavid BasaApril 2, 1989 (age 23) Global FC2012 Philippine Peace CupDFAlexander BorromeoJune 28, 1983 (age 29) Kayav. Chicago Inferno, August 11, 2012DFRoxy DorlasSeptember 2, 1987 (age 25) Loyolav. Guam, June 12, 2012MFMisagh BahadoranJanuary 10, 1987 (age 25) Global FCv. Kuwait, October 16, 2012MFJosh BooneDecember 5, 1992 (age 19) Pasargadv. Chicago Inferno, August 11, 2012MFRuben DoctoraApril 17, 1986 (age 26) Stallion FCv. Australia U-23, February 16, 2012MFLexton MoyJanuary 24, 1985 (age 27) Kaya2012 Philippine Peace CupMFManuel OttMay 6, 1992 (age 20) FC Ingolstadt 04 IIv. Indonesia, June 5, 2012MFOJ PorteriaMay 9, 1994 (age 18) Kayav. Kuwait, October 16, 2012MFStephan SchröckAugust 21, 1986 (age 26) TSG 1899 Hoffenheimv. Laos, September 10, 2012MFMatthew UyMarch 22, 1990 (age 22) Global FCv. Singapore, November 15, 2012MFAngelo VerheyeMay 14, 1992 (age 20) Gent2012 AFC Challenge CupFWIan AranetaMarch 2, 1982 (age 30) Philippine Air Forcev. Singapore, November 15, 2012FWJoshua BeloyaFebruary 20, 1991 (age 21) Ceres FCv. Singapore, November 15, 2012FWOJ ClariñoJuly 27, 1990 (age 22) Stallion FCv. Guam, June 12, 2012Previous squadsAFF Championship squads
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