The Philippine women's national football team, also known as the Malditas, is undergoing a three-month camp to prepare for the 2018 AFC Women’s Asian Cup, its first major tournament in 14 years.
The camp, to be participated by a pool of 40 women, kicked off this week in Corona, California and will run until March, according to AFC.com.
Overseeing their preparations is new head coach Richard Boon.
The Philippines made history by making it through the qualification stages and into the continental finals. Prior to that, the Malditas only made it as far as the pre-qualification stage.
Goalkeeper Inna Palacios said they will have to prepare thoroughly, given the type of competition they will be facing. The Malditas are clustered together with China PR, Thailand and host nation Jordan in Group A.
The group stage will begin on April 6, with the Philippines taking on Jordan.
“We want to give our best efforts when we get to Jordan. Having the camp in California is providing the training and recovery we will need in our preparations up until April,” Palacios said.
“It’s weird being away from home and not having the vibe of the Philippines, but this is the sacrifice asked of us to represent the flag. It’s important to push through adversity.”
(For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.)