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Stajcic: U23 squad lost nothing from PH win over Matildas

13 Jul 2022 | 08:24 | Football


Sarina Bolden (second from right) of the Philippines has a decisive header against Austria.  Filipinas' key midfielder is one of the players capable of creating big moments for the team.  —PICTURES OF EMPLOYEES

Sarina Bolden (second from right) of the Philippines has a decisive header against Austria. Filipinas’ key midfielder is one of the players capable of creating big moments for the team. —PICTURES OF EMPLOYEES

Coach Alen Stajcic felt it was unnecessary to take into account the Philippines’ 1-0 win over Australia late on Monday night. It was a victory claimed no matter who the Aussies were on the field.

“We are not fighting the smallest of the world; you’re playing against a country that made it to the quarterfinals of the World Cup, you know, a team [has been] top of the world for a long time,” said Stajcic, who once handled the Australian women’s team, the Matildas, before finding his way to call the shots for the Philippines.

The Matildas arrived in Manila for the Asean Football Federation (AFF) Women’s Football Championship without their big guns, with the majority of the players here coming from their U23 team. But that hardly took anything away from Filipinas, who fought bravely until Sarina Bolden’s goal in the 60th minute led the Philippines to victory.

“You know, you know, maybe four chances or four chances over the course of 90 minutes is really an incredible Australian effort,” he said. “I don’t think you can understate how much effort it takes to keep such a team down to four or five chances over the course of a game. From that point of view, the entire group and [goalkeeper] Olivia [McDaniel] did a wonderful job. “

The Filipinas will look to summon that bravery and finish again when they battle Singapore in Wednesday’s Group A match at Rizal Memorial Stadium.

The match takes place at 7pm, with the possibility of an extra 3 points that will give Stajcic a chance to reach the semi-finals of the regional championship.

Accumulate the World Cup

The result against Australia will be of great benefit to the team not only during the tournament but also in preparation for the 2023 Women’s World Cup.

“So for us, the game they brought to the first half was beautiful. But we settled a few things in the first half, and the players came out and showed that they can compete. So I’m really pleased with the results and the performance,” said Stajcic.

Bolden’s goal showcased her role as one of the players who could deliver key moments for Filipinas.

The striker’s goal in the penalty shootout against China-Taipei in the quarter-finals of the AFC Asian Cup secured the country’s historic World Cup title while her equalizer helped sealed the Philippines’ 2-1 win over Myanmar to win bronze in the recent Southeast Asian tournament. Asian Games in Vietnam.

McDaniel also came in for Filipinas, her pair of saves in the 70th minute denying Australia an equalizer. But Stajcic praised his teammates’ collective effort in limiting Australia’s chances, another positive aspect that Filipinas will try to maintain for at least the remainder of the group stage.


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