Since their formation nine months ago, the Philippine national women’s football team has played more than enough matches to help fast track their growth.
After playing 23 matches so far, the Filipinas have risen in ranking, leaping from no. 64 to no. 53 in the FIFA world rankings from December last year, to June this year.
And it will most probably go up again following their qualification to the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, their bronze medal finish in the recent Southeast Asian Games, and first ever title conquest in the 2022 ASEAN Football Federation Women’s Championship.
“We’ve played extraordinary game, 23 matches. The average for a national team is 8 to 12 matches,” said Stajcic.
Their title win in the AFF is a special and memorable moment for the squad, which is now preparing to compete in the World Cup next year.
“And in that short period of time that we already played 23 matches, in some respects, we are already fast-tracking their development,” added Stajic.
The Filipinas are still on a break, and will soon resume training, and get ready to play friendly in the coming FIFA window in September, November, and December.
The windows are international match calendar where members of national squads are released by their clubs so they can be available for call-ups.
The Filipinas will have friendlies set between Sept. 19 to 27 in this year’s coming window.
In these games, Stajcic believes that this will strengthen the resolve of the players, because they will no longer be look upon as underdogs in any tournaments and friendlies that they will join.
“There’s no magic formula (in developing the team), other than playing more games, and keeping them together as a group,” added Stajcic.