MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine Azkals will clash with Bahrain in a friendly match on Friday night as they prepare for the AFF Suzuki Cup in November.
The Bahrain side, which is ranked No. 115 in the world, said they are not underestimate the 147-ranked Filipinos.
“We are taking the match against the Filipinos seriously. I was, in fact, planning to play two different teams in the two halves, but since the Bahrain Football Association have classified the friendlies as official international friendlies, I cannot go ahead with my plans,” Peter Taylor, the chief coach of Bahrain, said in Asean Football.
The Bahrain game, which takes place at the Al-Muharraq Stadium, is part of the Azkals’ Middle East training camp.
The Philippine team reached the semifinals of the 2010 edition of the Cup. It hopes to improve its finish this year.
“We’re happy that the team is getting the chance to play a quality opponent in Bahrain. The team can only learn from this experience which we hope will come in handy in the AFF Suzuki Cup,” said Azkals team manager Dan Palami.
The Azkals are clustered in Group A with hosts Thailand, Vietnam and the winning team from the qualifiers.