The Philippine national women’s football team repulsed Iran, 2-0, to start the campaign in the 2020 Olympic Football Tournament—Asian Qualifiers Round 2 on a bright note late Wednesday evening at the Grand Hamad Stadium in Doha, Qatar.
The Filipinas, who are also getting ready for the 30th Southeast Asian Games, found their form in the opening minutes of the second half, and made up for a scoreless first half with goals from Joyce Semacio and Alisha del Campo.
Semacio struck in the 47th minute, shattering a scoreless tie when she fired a volley from inside the box.
Del Campo added a second goal five minutes later after getting a precise pass from Sara Castaneda, whose assist went through two defenders.
The win allowed the Marnelli Dimzon-coached squad to move to second place in Group C.
Chinese Taipei took the solo lead on points after they won over Palestine, 3-0.
The Philippines will next meet Chinese Taipei on Saturday, April 6 and Sunday April 7, 2019 in Manila.
The Filipinas are closing in on a slot to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
In the first round held in Tajikistan last November, the Philippines finished second in Group A. They made it with three wins over Singapore (9-0), Tajikistan (3-1) and Mongolia (5-1).
Then, they took a loss against Chinese Taipei (5-0).
“We wish the Philippine Women’s National Football Team the best of luck as they embark on another round of Olympic Qualifiers in the Asian region,” said Philippine Football Federation secretary general Atty. Edwin Gastanes.
Gastanes added that women’s football has come a long way, “and we hope the team builds on this ahead of the upcoming 30th Southeast Asian Games this November.”
The Olympic qualifiers is the first of at least three competitions for the Filipinas this year.
There’s the AFF Women’s Championship set for August 2019 in Thailand and the 30th Southeast Asian Games in November 2019 in Manila.
The 30th SEA Games, according Gastanes, will also serve as an Olympic qualifier.