Azkals play for survival against Thailand

ABS-CBN Sports on Nov 25, 2016 09:25 AM
Azkals play for survival against Thailand
Manny Ott and the Philippine Azkals will need to be at their best when they take on Thailand, Friday evening

After two disappointing draws to open the 2016 AFF Suzuki Cup, the Philippine Azkals are put in the ultimate must-win situation when they meet defending champions Thailand to close out the group stage, Friday evening at the Philippine Sports Stadium, in Bocaue Bulacan. 

In what could be the Philippine Azkals' last stand in this year's AFF Suzuki Cup, the Pinoy side will need to get past the leaders of Group A to pick up the all-important three points. 

After figuring in draws against Singapore and Thailand, the Philippines currently sit at second place of Group A with two points, and here are the scenarios that lie in front of the Philippine men's national football team. 

A win over Thailand will give the Azkals five points and will ensure their entry into the next round. 

Should the Azkals and Thailand figure in a draw, the Azkals will finish with three points, and will need the Singapore-Indonesia match to end in a draw as well in order to advance. 

Shoul the Azkals lose, they finish the tournament with two points and hope that the the Singapore-Indonesia match end in a draw, and the goal differences work in their favor. Should either Singapore or Indonesia win in this situation, they advance into the next round and the Azkals bid their campaign goodbye. 

The situation isn't as dire for group-leading Thailand. It's quite the opposite, in fact, as they've already clinched their spot in the semfinals, regardless of the outcome. 

Even if the War Elephants can take it easy against the Azkals, head coach Thomas Dooley doesn't think it's going to happen. 

With their tournament lives on the line, the Philippine Azkals willl need to, as team captain Phil Younghusband put it, "play their best game."

"It'll take everyone doing their job," Younghusband added. "It will be very very tough, but we're gonna have to be, every player is gonna have to be a hundred percent." 

 

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