The Philippine women's national football team is in a must-win situation against Myanmar in their final Group E match of the 19th Asian Games.
Kick off is at 7:30 p.m. at the Wenzhou Sports Center Stadium, with the Filipinas needing to win just to have a chance to advance to the quarterfinals.
The Filipinas split their first two matches in the Asiad: they opened their campaign with a 3-1 triumph against Hong Kong before suffering a 5-1 beating against continental powerhouse South Korea.
Against Myanmar, they will not have the services of Katrina Guillou, who has flown back to Sweden to join her club team, Piteå IF, for the Damallsvenskan.
Even without their tireless midfielder, the Filipinas are "excited," according to defender and team captain Hali Long.
"It's always a tough competition and battle against Myanmar. It always seems to be such an important game for us," she said, while noting that they lost to their rivals in the Southeast Asian Games earlier this year. "We have to make that up tomorrow."
Long also acknowledged that they are still adjusting to the changes made by their new coach, Mark Torcaso, who replaced Alen Stajcic at the helm after the Filipinas' campaign in the FIFA Women's World Cup 2023.
"We just have to adjust. It’s a new system and it’s going to be a process and to go forward we have to go backwards and that’s okay. I just know that we worked hard in our last game," said Long. "It just shows how much more improvement we need to do. I’m not disappointed with the effort. But we have to regroup, recover and play even harder in the next game."
South Korea is already assured of a place in the quarterfinals with six points from two matches. The Philippines will need to beat Myanmar to finish as the second seed in Group E.
The three best second-placed teams will also advance to the knockout phase.