Written and Photographed
By Jude Bautista
Immediately after coming from their 2nd place finish in the recently concluded Asian Football Confederation Cup, the AZKALS are already looking forward to the future. AZKALS team leaders Phil Younghusband together with brother James are the two official endorsers of the brand CLEAR from Unilever.
Phil explained how the company is able to help sports in general, “Unilever, CLEAR they’ve been so supportive of sports, of football. They have programs in basketball in running, in triathlon. In football, they’ve just been so supportive of the sport. Promoting the sport helps promote the people in that sport, helps me James and all of the players. I’m obviously very grateful and I feel very blessed to have the opportunity to just be the face of the products (CLEAR & REXONA). So it’s helped me on a personal level and its helped Philippine Football. They’ve helped Philippine football grow and make me happier than anything.”
The upcoming CLEAR DREAM Match this Saturday June 7, 2014 at the University of Makati Stadium features two former Manchester United players in Paul Scholes and Andy Cole. Scholes has been part of several Manchester United Championship squads and will play for TEAM PHIL. Cole has scoring titles in nearly every year will be in TEAM JAMES.
Paul Scholes is the quintessential Manchester United player having played his entire career from 1993 to 2013. He is considered as one of the best midfielders of his generation and is also one of the most colorful personalities as well.
Andy Cole is the second highest goal scorer in Premiere League history with 187. Apart from Manchester United he has also played for Arsenal, Newcastle United, Blackburn Rovers, Fulham, Manchester City. He was also considered as one of the highest paid players in the early 90s.
News website INTERAKSYON reported the competing teams for the CLEAR DREAM MATCH will also be composed of amateur players specifically chosen and trained by Manchester United Soccer Schools coaches Kevin O’Connel and Jamie Fitzpatrick. The 6 were chosen from 32.
The teams are a mix of national team players and the 6 from the development program sponsored by CLEAR last April. These are the kinds of development programs that search for future National team players for the AZKALS. The CLEAR DREAM MATCH ticket sales will also benefit the Tuloy Foundation, which aims to help street kids be integrated to mainstream society.
AZKALS recent spate of wins was aired in ABS CBN Sports namely the AFC Challenge Cup, FIFA World Cup Qualifiers and Long Teng Cup in Taiwan. Fans should watch out for the Peace Cup to be aired later this year where the hold the title of defending champions.
ABS CBN Sports has telecast the team’s rise to fame and success. This has been made evident with the Philippines having risen in the FIFA Rankings from a low of 216 in 2004 all the way to its current ranking of 127, which was achieved in February of this year.
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