Football: Palacios, Long lead way as PH women return to action

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 14 2021 11:00 AM

The Philippine women's national football team will compete in the qualifiers for the Asian Cup later this month. Photo courtesy of the PFF
The Philippine women's national football team will compete in the qualifiers for the Asian Cup later this month. Photo courtesy of the PFF

MANILA, Philippines -- The Philippine women's national football team will return to competition in the qualifiers for the AFC Women's Asian Cup, which kicks off on September 18 in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.

The Philippines, ranked 68th in the FIFA Rankings, is in Group F and will face Nepal (ranked 101st) and Hong Kong (ranked 78th) at JAR Stadium in Tashkent.

The team opens its campaign against Nepal on September 18, with kickoff set at 3 p.m. They play Hong Kong on September 24, with kickoff again at 3 p.m.

The Philippine Football Federation (PFF) on Monday night announced that 22 players were called up for the qualifiers, led by veteran goalkeeper Inna Palacios who will be the team's skipper. Defender Hali Long is the co-captain of the team.

Tahnai Annis, Jessica Miclat, and Ryley Bugay, who were part of the team that competed in the AFC Women's Asian Cup 2018 in Jordan, make their return to the squad.

Former youth national team players Arianna LePage and Isabelle Mapanao are among the new additions to the squad.

The head coach is Marlon Maro and assisted by Michael Agbayani, Jose Maria Aberasturi, Marlon Piñero, Anthony Albao, and Rose Ton Bariñan.

In preparation for the qualifiers, the team held online training sessions early this year, before conducting a training camp in Irvine, California from August 4 to September 11.

The team left for Uzbekistan last Sunday.

The full team is as follows:

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