Fans can watch the Philippines vs. Uzbekistan football match live online and see if the Filipino team can meet their biggest challenge to date in the World Cup Qualifying tournament.
The match starts at from Bunyodkor Stadium in Tashkent at 6 p.m. local time (9 p.m. for those watching in the Philippines). There will be livestreaming video available for those not able to catch the game on television (links to streaming video can be found below).
Those who watch the Philippines vs. Uzkekistan football game live online will see a Filipino team with its back to the wall. The team is holding tight to the third spot in Group H, just one point ahead of Bahrain, and is in desperate need of a point to solidify its position.
As the Inquirer reported, Philippines coach Thomas Dooley has told his team to keep their focus on one word — fight.
“I think that word suits our team when we play tomorrow,” defender Juani Guirado said. “We have to fight for 90 minutes.”
And to make matters more difficult, the Philippine team will be without key players Stephan Schrock and Phil Younghusband, who are both nursing injuries that kept them from traveling to Uzbekistan. There will be others missing from the regular roster, including suspended winger Misagh Bahadoran and midfielder Manny Ott, and the recently retired veterans Rob Gier, Paul Mulders, and Jerry Lucena.
Paul Mulders retired from Philippines national team: Manager Dan Palami confirmed that Paul Mulders has retire… https://t.co/kSOeJoB0at
— Football 24/7 (@foetball247) March 18, 2016
But their absences will create an opportunity for some of the team’s younger players, including OJ Porteria, Kenshiro Daniels, and Dominic del Rosario.
“It’s going to be very difficult but we can always see this as an opportunity for other players to step up,” Dooley added (via Ghana Soccernet).
Goalkeeper Neil Etheridge agreed.
“We are always looking forward to improving the depth in the squad and even though these are extremely hard games, it’s a chance for the coach to test young players,” he said.
As the Inquirer added, the Philippine football team has not had an easy road to Thursday’s match, figuratively or literally.
“The Azkals arrived in Tashkent last Sunday night, enduring a close to 24-hour travel that included a 12-hour stop at Incheon Airport in South Korea. It’s a far from ideal scenario for a team desperate to keep its third place position in Group H. Bahrain plays Yemen in Manama and a win coupled by an Azkals loss here will push the Bahrainis to third spot,relegating the Azkals to fourth. Then there’s a small matter of the Azkals facing North Korea on Tuesday at Rizal Memorial Stadium with another long journey under their belts and only a couple of days preparation.”
Those who watch the Philippines vs. Uzbekistan match will see what even Dooley admits is a mismatch.
“The only way for us to get a result is if we play outstanding and they play bad,” he said (via Inquirer).
That was not the case when the teams met in September when the Uzbeks jumped out to an early advantage and ended up winning 5-1.
But the Filipino squad has met challenges before, including an unlikely draw with North Korea last year. So despite the loss last year to the Uzbeks, a strong showing is not out of the question.
Uzbekistan (4-2-3-1 formation): Lobanov, Ismailov, Denisov, Tukhtakhodjaev, Krimets; Haydarov, Djeparov; Ahmedov, Andreev, Rashidov; Sergeev
Philippines (4-3-3 formation): Etheridge; Ramsay, Aguinaldo, Sato, Daniels, Woodland, Steuble, Reichelt, Clariño, Patiño, Flores
Fans who want to watch the Philippines vs. Uzbekistan match live online can click here for streaming video links.
[Picture by Kevin Lee/Getty Images]