The Philippine Azkals national football team will count on the experience of Fil-Spanish player Angel Guirado when they plunge into action in the 2022 Qatar Fifa World Cup and AFC Asian Cup 2023 joint-qualifiers.
The 6’3” Guirado has returned to the team since 2019 and is looking forward to step up and fill in the spot left by Phil Younghusband following his retirement last year.
“I want to give my best for everybody. It’s nice when you go all out,” said Guirado in a podcast on the Azkals’ ongoing bubble training camp.
Guirado and the Azkals have left their training camp in Doha, Qatar, and went to Sharja in the United Arab Emirates to prepare for the resumption of the qualifiers.
“Many young players have come and gone into the team. But my spirit and passion for the game and team remain the same,” added Guirado, who first played for the Azkals from 2011 to 2015.
The matches start on Tuesday at the Sharjah Stadium, with the Azkals clashing with China at 1 a.m. (Manila time).
The Philippines will next face Guam on June 11, 10 p.m. and close out the second round of qualifiers against Maldives on June 15, 10 p.m.
Last week, the Chinese Football Association called off the games of the 2022 Qatar Fifa World Cup and AFC Asian Cup 2023 joint-qualifier in Suzhou, China.
Reports of COVID-19 infections from members of the Azkals, the Syrian and the Maldives squads prompted the change in the schedule and venue of the matches.
The Philippines has a 2-1-2 win-draw-loss record in third place, behind China (2-1-1) in the Group A standings.
A win will help the Azkals in their bid to advance to the third round of the qualifiers.