It all comes down to this. One match to determine if the Philippines will advance to their first ever AFF Suzuki Cup final.
The Philippine Men’s National Team look to overturn a 1-2 disadvantage when they face Vietnam in the second leg of the AFF Suzuki Cup 2018 semifinal set on Thursday 6 December 2018 at the My Dinh National Stadium in Hanoi, Vietnam.
The Azkals return to the same stadium where they defeated Vietnam, 2-0, during the AFF Suzuki Cup 2010 group stages. Chris Greatwich, who is now one of the team’s assistant coaches, and Phil Younghusband found the back of the net that night to mark a historic night for Philippine football.
Memories of that night still lives on in the minds of the players, but for Younghusband, the stakes have never been this higher. The Philippines needs to win by two goals to advance to the final where they will face the winner of the Thailand vs Malaysia tie next week.
“We know it’s going to be difficult, but we have good memories here in Hanoi at this stadium,” said Younghusband, who is the team’s top scorer and most capped player.
History may not be on the side of the Philippines in their last 3 semifinal exits, but the Azkals captain remains confident that team has the perfect opportunity to turn the tie around despite the disadvantage.
“We’re still in the game, we still have a chance, we’re going to do our best to win tomorrow,” added Younghusband. “We’re very excited and looking forward for the game.”
Head coach Sven Goran Eriksson, who has been in similar situations in his illustrous career, shared that the team has what it takes to advance to the final.
“Unfortunately we lost the first leg, it’s going to be a very tough task tomorrow, but we will try to change the result and I think it is possible,” said the Swede. “We have 18 players for tomorrow, that’s more than enough to win the game tomorrow.”