Kaya-Iloilo FC withstood the relentless attacking of the Azkals Development Team Saturday night, escaping with a 1-0 victory, its second in a row in the Philippines Football League at the PFF national training center field in Carmona, Cavite.
Striker Kenshiro Daniels took advantage of the defensive lapse of Mar Diano, breaking away to score the winning goal in the 16th minute as the squad kept pace with United City FC, which whipped Mendiola FC 6-0 earlier in the day, with two victories each.
Coming off from a 0-1 setback to UCFC last Wednesday, the ADT was more active this time and had some bright moments, but they lacked the finishing touch in dropping their second heartbreaking loss in the event presented by Qatar Airways.
Pesky forward Daizo Horikoshi also often had the ADT defense on its toes while former Trinidad and Tobago national player Carlyle Mitchell was a stable presence in the back row, often clearing away several potential attacks of their rivals.
“Without Mitchell we would not have won,” acknowledged Japanese Kaya Iloilo FC coach Yu Yoshide in citing the defender’s major contribution in the close triumph.
The Japanese mentor was also glad “that we had 3 points for the win and came away with no serious injuries,” noting that it was a physical game underscored by the 20 fouls his team committed against the 18 of their opponents.
“Obviously Kaya FC-Iloilo was the better team tonight. My boys still lack the composure and our structure was not that strong compared to what we had against UCFC,” British ADT mentor Scott Cooper noted. “It would be nice to see a score but overall my team was not too bad.
“Against two teams that are playing in the AFC Cup, I believe we did quite well.”
He pointed out that his charges were still quite young who “can get overexcited. They play with fire in the belly and fire in the head, instead of fire in the belly and ice in the head. They have to learn to keep their cool during ball possessions.”
Cooper likewise singled out Diano who, despite his lapse that led to the winning goal, showed “a bit of promise. He wins his headers and positions himself quite well. I would say that he is showing signs that he can move on.”