Philippine Azkals' Lucena: "Everybody's ready, everybody's focused."
Santino Honasan on Sep 08, 2015 06:49 PM
Of course, I would love to score, but the most important thing for me is that we do good as a team. - Jerry Lucena
Last Thursday, Fil-Danish Jerry Lucena provided the finishing blow in the Azkals’ International Friendly match against the Maldives.
Tuesday night however will be a whole different story, as Lucena and the Azkals head into their third World Cup Qualifiers match against Uzbekistan, and the stakes are much higher.
After winning their first two matches, the Azkals are hoping to carry momentum into this all-important third match, against the highest-ranked squad in Group H, even more so now, that North Korea picked up their third win in the tournament, downing Bahrain, 1-0 last September 3.
Lucena scored his second career goal against Maldives during their friendly, and of course, he says that he would love to be able to score against an opponent that isn’t the Maldives, but that’s not his focus right now.
“Of course, I would love to score, but the most important thing for me is that we do good as a team.”
The Maldives win was a huge momentum boost for the team, and according to Lucena they hope to be able to carry that momentum against an Uzbekistan side that they know will be a tough matchup.
“It’s the third game under this new system and of course, we hope to be confident going into this game, but we know that this is a really strong opponent that we’re going through. We really have a lot of respect for them, but we have to play our game and see how it goes.” Lucena told ABS-CBN Sports.
“Everybody’s ready, everybody’s focused. It’s an important game for both teams, so we’re looking forward to it.”
Uzbekistan won their first match against Yemen, 1-0, before falling to the Group H leaders North Korea, 2-4.
The Philippines remains perfect with a 2-1 win over Bahrain, followed by a 2-0 win over Yemen. The Azkals hope to be able to make it three in a row.
Catch the Azkals vs Uzbekistan on Tuesday, September 8, 7:45 pm LIVE on ABS-CBN Sports+Action 23 and BALLS HD 167!