Football: Filipinas to play 2 friendlies vs. Costa Rica

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 20 2022 11:21 AM

Members of the Philippine Women's National Football Team celebrate after winning the country’s first ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) Women's Championship title at the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila on July 17, 2022. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News
Members of the Philippine Women's National Football Team celebrate after winning the country’s first ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) Women's Championship title at the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila on July 17, 2022. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

The Philippine women's national football team will play two friendly matches against Costa Rica in the next FIFA international window in October, the Philippine Football Federation (PFF) has announced.

The Filipinas will set up camp at the Costa Rican capital of San Jose, and will play La Sele on October 7 (October 8 in Manila) at the Alejandro Morera Soto Stadium.

The two teams meet again on October 11 to cap the Filipinas' 11-day camp with kick-off time and venue to be announced at a later date.

The player list for the camp, possible broadcast and livestream details for the matches will also be announced soon.

The trip to Costa Rica comes on the heels of the Filipinas' two-week camp in California from the last week of August until September 6, when they played New Zealand in a friendly match at Titan Stadium in Fullerton, California.

"The friendly matches against Costa Rica in October give us a chance to experience different styles of play after playing against New Zealand early this month," coach Alen Stajcic said. "What's important for us is to learn and build on these experiences which will be a huge factor in our World Cup campaign next year."

Stajcic said the goal is to continue improving with the team waiting for the outcome of the official draw of the FIFA Women's World Cup next month.

"We improved a lot, but there's no doubt that expectations and goals are higher and we know how hard it is to keep climbing so we're working hard trying to reset our goals to keep striving for more success," he explained.

"It's just continued growth for us. We're heading down the right track but definitely we're not getting complacent on thinking this is enough. We want more."

Costa Rica qualified for the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup, after finishing in fourth place in the CONCACAF Women's Championship in Mexico last July. La Sele is No. 37 in the FIFA rankings, 16 spots ahead of the Filipinas.

Team manager Jefferson Cheng assured that more steps are being taken to prepare the Filipinas for their maiden World Cup appearance in Australia and New Zealand next year.

"The team needs as much time together as the players' schedules will allow, and the more competitive matches we play, the more team cohesion and chemistry will improve," he said.

"We assure the Philippine football community that the whole PWNFT—management, coaching staff and plays alike — continues to do its best to train and prepare for the FIFA Women's World Cup next year, and the PFF is committed to find ways for the team to get more matches against quality opponents," he added.

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