The landmark game featuring the Philippine women’s national football team and South American powerhouse Chile gets off the ground Saturday night (Sunday morning in Manila) at the Estadio Sausalito in Vina Del Mar.
Pegged as a part of the Filipinas’ buildup for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, the friendly game is a breakthrough given that the “this will be the first time the PFF will be sending the team to South America,” PFF president Mariano ‘Nonong’ Araneta said.
“With less than a year before the Women’s World Cup, the PFF wants to make sure that the team continues to stay sharp and ready,” Araneta added.
The two teams will meet again on 15 November.
The Philippines will face stiff competition next year as they are in Group A along with co-host New Zealand, Switzerland and Norway.
Forwards Sarina Bolden and Katrina Guillou banner the 23-woman pool for the Filipinas along with Alisha del Campo, Quinley Quezada and Isabella Flannigan, who recently committed to play for West Virginia in the US NCAA Division 1.
Midfielder Sara Eggsvik also joins the pool along with Tahnai Annis, Anicka Castañeda, Carleigh Frilles, Kaya Hawkinson, Cam Rodriguez and Meryll Soriano.
Reina Bonta is included in the pool together with Malea Cesar, Jesika Cowart, Hali Long, Eva Madarang, Chantelle Maniti, Dominique Randle and Tara Shelton.
Completing the pool are goalkeepers Olivia McDaniel, Inna Palacios and Kiarra Fontanilla.
La Roja Femenina will have a 24-woman cast led by Yenny Acuña.
Beefing up the team are Isidora Olave, Daniela Zamora, Valentina Navarrete, Thiare Parraguez, Sonya Keefe, and Millaray Cortes.
The Chilean midfield will have Karen Araya, Gisela Pino, Yastin Jimenez, Ivette Olivarez, Javiera Grez and Yessenia Lopez.
Camila Saez, Javiera Toro, Nayadet Lopez Opazo, Carla Guerrero, Fernanda Ramirez, Rosario Balmaceda, Fernanda Hidalgo and Michelle Olivares will be in charge of their defense.
La Roja Femenina’s goalkeepers will be Christiane Endler, Antonia Canales and Ryann Torrero to cap off the pool.
While the Filipinas have already secured a slot in the World Cup, Chile has to go through an inter-continental match between the winner of Senegal and Haiti to earn a spot in the biggest football competition in the world.
The Philippines is also training in Chile under the guidance of head coach Alen Stajcic.
Earlier, the Filipinas had friendly matches with New Zealand and Costa.
Last September, the Philippines absorbed a 2-1 loss to the Football Ferns while the friendly matches against Las Ticas last month resulted to a 1-1 draw and a 2-1 loss.