The newly-formed Philippine national women’s futsal team got great exposures during its first international friendlies against Guam over the weekend.
New national head coach Vic Hermans said this after a 15-member national under-23 squad was introduced and played two 5-a-side exhibition games at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium.
“For me, this game is very attractive for everyone,” said Hermans after members of the squad got to know the highs and lows of their performances following a win and a loss to Guam.
Hermans added that by letting the members of the team play their first games against an international opponent has provided enough motivation for the players to get even better.
The team’s goalie Mykaela Abeto got the most out of the game since it helped build up Team Philippines’ defensive setups.
“This is their first international friendly. The motivation here is that they are able to play after so many years” said Hermans.
The team, known as the Pinay5, was assembled under Hermans’ guidance and played as a team more than two years after the country was placed into a series of lockdowns because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
They started on Saturday with a 0-1 loss to Guam, which scored off Koharu Minato.
On Sunday, the Pinay5 scored on goals from Hannah Marie Muros, Aurea Coleen Reaso and Jaqueline Ballares, for a 3-1 triumph, sealing the country’s first international friendly win.
The 69-year-old Hermans, who has managed six different national teams and guided three of them to the World Cup, said this is just the first step in the formation of a competitive Philippine team in futsal.
“We need to know where the girls are now, and in the short time that we have formed the team,” said Hermans, known for his success in steering Iran to the title in the 2001 Asian Championship.
Like the Philippines, Guam is also restarting its futsal program with its women’s team, under coach Ross Awa.
Hermans has also handled the national squads of Malta, Thailand, and Indonesia.