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Phl booters suffer heartbreaking loss

The Philippine national men’s football team rued all of its missed chances as it settled to a 1-1 draw against Indonesia in the second round of the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualification last Tuesday at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium.

Azkals head coach Michael Weiss admitted the game could have been won if they converted their attempts in front of the goal.

Patrick Reichelt was the only player for the Philippines to score — in the 23rd minute — before Saddil Ramdani scored an equalizer in the 70th minute for the Indonesians.

“We didn’t bury the game. After what we have invested in the last two games we only had one point?,” Weiss said.

“In the first half of the game, we could have buried the match with a lot of the chances we had. How many more chances do you want?”

As it stands, the Azkals remain at third place in Group F with a 0-1-1 win-draw-loss record.

But the remaining matches for the qualifiers will test the team’s resolve as three of the four games will be held overseas next year.

The Philippines will face Iraq on 21 March 2024 before flying back to Manila again on 26 March to play the Iraqis.

Then, the Azkals will face Vietnam on 6 June before wrapping up the second round against the Indonesians on 11 June.

Only the top two squads of the group will make the next round of the World Cup qualifiers and will get an outright berth for the 2027 Asian Football Confederation Asian Cup in Saudi Arabia.

The bottom two teams of the group will play in the third round of the Asian Cup qualifiers.

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