PH football team wins 1st ever AFF Women’s Championship title

·2 min read

THE Philippines had another historic feat in 2022 after winning its first-ever Asian Football Federation (AFF) Women’s Championship title since the tournament’s inception in 2004.

The Filipinas are now the queens of Southeast Asian football with an impressive 3-0 win over perennial contenders Thailand in front of a huge crowd of 8,257 fans at the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila.

“This win is truly exhilarating. We’ve climbed a little hill tonight; we’ve conquered Southeast Asia but I know there are big mountains ahead. It is a big hill to climb and there are bigger challenges ahead of us,” said Philippines head coach Alen Stajcic in a report posted at the AFF’s official website.

The Filipinas did the unthinkable and earned its first ever World Cup appearance after qualifying earlier this year after finishing fourth in the joint 2023 World Cup qualifiers and AFC Asian Cup in February. The team also won bronze in the Southeast Asian Games in May.

Thailand, a four-time AFF Women’s Championship titleholder, came into the match as the only unbeaten team in the tournament. Thailand beat the Philippines, 1-0, in the group stage.

Even though Thailand had the momentum coming into the match, the Philippines drew its confidence from a huge hometown crowd and a 4-0 beating of defending champion Vietnam in the semifinals.

Center back Jessika Cowart scored the opening goal for the Philippines in the seventh minute with a header from a corner kick by skipper Tahnai Annis.

Forward Katrina Guillou added another with a strike in the middle in the 19th minute.

Striker Sarina Bolden, the tournament’s leading scorer, put the nail on the coffin with a header in the 88th minute coming off a corner kick by Jacklyn Sawicki.

On the other hand, Myanmar finished third place after a come-from-behind 4-3 victory over Vietnam.

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