THE Philippines outplayed Guam, 3-0, on Friday night in the second round of the 2022 FIFA World Cup and 2023 AFC Asian Cup qualification at the Sharjah Stadium in United Arab Emirates.
The Azkals picked up their third victory overall in the qualification tournament – and their first inside the centralized or bubble competition in Sharjah – to atone for their 2-0 loss to China last Tuesday.
The Filipino booters also moved closer to clinching, at least, a berth in the third round of the Asian Cup qualifiers by cementing hold of third place in Group A with 10 points, four adrift of fourth-placer Maldives.
Angel Guirado opened scoring in the 12th minute before showing dominance in the second half on their way to the victory.
Miguel Lopez scored an own goal in the 61st off a free kick from the left wing by Manny Ott, and the Azkals put the match away when Mark Hartmann’s own free kick in the 88th ended up at the back of the net.
Moments after the final whistle, however, skipper Stephan Schrock spoke to the Azkals on the pitch, visibly unhappy with the performance of the team that was tagged as the overwhelming favorite entering the match.
Guam, which was coming off a 4-0 defeat to Syria, stayed winless in in seven matches.
Jefferson Tabinas was also responsible for the Azkals’ first goal of the match, after his through ball to Oliver Bias led to a cross that allowed Guirado to score early.
The senior men’s national team caps off their campaign inside the UAE bubble against Maldives on June 15.