MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine national football team, also called the "Azkals," offered free football training to youngsters in Tacloban City – the place where the Filipino booters trained for the ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup early December.
During their football clinic, the young football players of Tacloban were very much enthusiastic. Other young fans enjoyed watching their football heroes from the sidelines.
"This is our way of saying thank you sa Tacloban because they have been instrumental to the preparation of the Azkals," said Dan Palami, the Azkals' team manager.
Siblings Phil and James Younghusband, who were not present during the morning session, arrived later in the day to join the team-sponsored training .
The Younghusbands themselves have launched their own football clinic in Manila for young people interested in the sport.
"The Younghusband Football Academy [is] where we go to public schools and we teach the PE [Physical Education] teachers to teach the kids," Phil said.
"For free, we got to teach some kids," James added.
They said that this is their way to promote football in the Philippines.
Meantime, the Azkals are gearing up for a World Cup 2011 qualifier and the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Challenge Cup on February to be held in Bacolod City. – Report by Jenette Ruedas, ABS-CBN News Tacloban