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    Bienve Marañon keeps the faith as he awaits Filipino citizenship

    May 21, 2021
    PHOTO: ceres-negros fc

    PATIENTLY waiting is Bienvenido Marañon as he keeps the faith that soon enough, his Filipino citizenship will come.

    "After [Ange Kouame], it's my time. Now we have to be quiet, we have to be calm, and soon for sure, it will be my time," he told 2OT x Crossover on Thursday.

    Marañon's plea was delayed following an amendment on the immediate effectivity of his naturalization.

    It's a tough position to be in for Marañon, who was hoping to see action for the Philippine Azkals in the AFC second round of the 2022 Fifa World Cup qualification this June in Suzhou, China.

    Had the Spain-born striker gained his Filipino citizenship, he would have played for the Azkals against Guam in June 3, China in June 9, and Maldives in June 15.

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    The Philippines currently holds seven points in Group A thanks to its 2-1-2 record, behind the undefeated Syria with 15 points (5-0-0) and China with seven points (2-1-1).

    Marañon, though, is praying that the process will soon be fasttracked.

    "I'm just waiting for that, for the papers to be brought to Malacañang, then I have to do the Oath [of Allegiance] in the embassy here in Madrid and after that, I will become a Filipino," the 35-year-old United City FC forward said.

    "My thinking now is to try to go with the Azkals. But if I don't have the time to go with them to China, it's okay. I have to be ready for the next game, fix everything, fix my naturalization, and after that, I can go anywhere with them. We have time, we have to enjoy, and we have to live the moment."

    A big morale boost for Marañon is his constant communication with Azkals coach Scott Cooper.

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    "He wanted me to come with the Azkals, wanted me to play with the Azkals," he said. "The most important for me is he have his confidence with me. He knows me and we've been in touch together."

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      For now, all Marañon could do is to trust the process and hope that soon enough, President Rodrigo Duterte will also sign his naturalization bill into law.

      "Right now, I'm hungry to play a game and play with them. I'm training and preparing myself to play with the Azkals. If not, I'm preparing myself for the [AFC] Champions League with United City," he said.
      ___

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      PHOTO: ceres-negros fc
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