MANILA, Philippines – Among the kinds of sports he played, Azkals team captain Aly Borromeo kept his relationship with football the longest.
Borromeo started hitting the pitch at 6 years old. But while growing up, he strayed away from football as he gained interest in other sports like basketball, tennis, golf, and athletics.
"Really all around," he told abs-cbnNEWS.com. "My grades were pretty bad but yeah."
By the time he re-entered football, he was beginning to realize that the sport isn't exactly doing well in the Philippines. Popularity-wise, at least.
That is, until the past months when Borromeo and his team attained success in the ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup and the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Challenge Cup.
"I thought I chose the wrong sport all the way until last year, 'til we started really doing well… I could've probably played basketball and made it on PBA," he said.
Now, isn't everyone glad that Borromeo stayed with football?
Name: Alexander Charles Luis Borromeo
Birthday: June 28, 1983
Birthplace: San Francisco, California. Raised in the Philippines
Position in the Azkals team: Center back
Start of football career: "I played for Under-14, Under-19 (tournaments)."
When and how did you start playing for the Azkals?
Actually it's funny because in the first games, I wasn't captain yet. I accidentally injured my old teammate. I hit him on the nose, broke his nose and I was given the captain post. (Laughing)
What's the best thing you like about football?
It's a different feeling when you score a goal. It's a team sport. Unity's involved, the equation. It's celebrating with others. I like making others feel good, making them happy since I joined the Azkals in 2004.
Starting June 15, abs-cbnNEWS.com will feature several members of the Philippine National football team to give local football fans a chance to get to know better their favorite Azkals players.
ABS-CBN Sports will be airing live the home and away FIFA World Cup qualifier between the Philippine Azkals and Sri Lanka on June 29 and July 23.