Nepal stalls Azkals' bid for 2019 AFC Asian Cup

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 14 2017 06:22 PM | Updated as of Nov 14 2017 07:01 PM

The Philippine Azkals will have to beat Tajikistan next year if they want to qualify for the 2019 AFC Asian Cup. Photo from AFC.com

(UPDATED) All they needed was one goal, but the Philippine Azkals didn't get it against Nepal on Tuesday (Manila time). 

The Azkals, who are on top of their group, were chasing a historical win in their AFC Asian Cup qualifier against Nepal at the ANFA Complex in Kathmandu.

But the host team managed to hold them to a scoreless draw.

Azkals had more control of the ball in the first half as the nationals consistently pressured Nepal's defense.

The Nepalese squad, however, did a better job thwarting the Azkals, who struggled to control the midfield.

The Azkals had several opportunities in the 75th minute when Nepal's keeper was injured and the Nepalese team could not be subbed as the Philippines had ball possession.

But Nepal's defense held up against Philippine pressure and kept the game scoreless.
 
In the 83rd minute, the Azkals also had a couple of chances when Daisuke Sato and Mike Ott attempted a couple of headers that were deflected by Nepal.

The Philippines remains of top of Group F with 9 points. 

The Azkals still have one more chance at qualifying in the 2019 AFC Asian Cup when they battle Tajikistan in March.

The Philippines has never competed yet in the AFC Asian Cup.

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