Defeat against Thailand is ‘part of the journey’ of PH women’s football team – Stajcic

29 May 2022 | 08:24 | Football

Philippines vs Thailand in 31st SEA Games women's soccer. PWNT / Raymond Braganza

Philippines vs Thailand in 31st SEA Games women’s soccer. PWNT / Raymond Braganza

MANILA, Philippines – Philippines women’s soccer team coach Alen Stajcic said the semi-final defeat to Thailand at the 31st Southeast Asian Games was “part of their journey” in the process. Continuous development of the program.

“This is part of our journey. We are just emerging at this level. Vietnam, Thailand and Myanmar have been playing at this level for the past 10 to 12 years. I remember Vietnam and Thailand lost with a big score,” Stajcic said later lost 0-3 to Thailand on Wednesday.

“It’s part learning, part journey and we are just beginning our journey at this football level. We haven’t played at this level of football for quite some time,” he added.

The women’s team still has a chance to win the first bronze medal at the SEA Games since 1985 when they play against Myanmar at 5 pm (Manila time) at Cam Pha Stadium.

Filipinas may have won Thailand in AFC Women’s Asia Last January, it was part of their historic path to qualifying for the 2023 Fifa World Cup, but Stajcic admits that Thailand has turned the biennial meeting into its playground, in when his team is just starting to work towards that level.

“Without a doubt, Thailand is the better team. They pass better, move better, shoot better,” he said.

Decorated Australian coach, curator national women’s soccer program last year, remaining patient with the progress of the Filipinas, who made waves earlier this year after qualifying for the World Cup.

“We were only in the last Asian Cup in Jordan and in India, so you know we will have 4-5 years at this level compared to Vietnam and Thailand and these players in Thailand. Lan has been to two World Cups, three to four Asian Cups, they’ve all had over 100 caps and they’ve shown their experience and quality,” he said.

“For us, it was a learning curve. We’re new at this level and we’re going to get better, we’re not afraid of it.”

Stajcic and Filipinas tried to overcome difficulties when they could not step on the podium after consecutively finishing in 4th place in the past two SEA Games.

The women’s national soccer team hopes to end a 37-year medal drought against Myanmar, which won 2-1, in their third place match in Binan, Laguna in 2019.

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