PUTTING country over club ambitions, Global will likely be shorthanded again when it vies for the United Football League Cup championship against Stallion on Monday night at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.
After the reigning League titlist defeated Loyola Meralco, 2-1, in the semifinals on Tuesday night with a lineup bereft of most of Global's national players, club owner Dan Palami hinted the Azkals in his squad will likely sit out the title match as well.
Palami explained pulling out the Global players from the Azkals' training at this point could have an adverse effect on the PH team's buildup for the Asean Football Federation Suzuki Cup.
“It’s too close to the opening of the Suzuki Cup,” said Palami, who had already stressed that his team’s priority is the national team. “The philosophy of Global is that the contribution to country comes first.”
Against the Sparks, Global dominated despite the absence of Azkals mainstays Marwin Angeles, Misagh Bahadoran, Jeff Christiaens, Juani Guirado, Carli de Murga Demit Omphroy, Patrick Reichelt, and Denis Wolf.
The powerhouse squad showed its depth with foreigners Alex Obiang of Cameroon and Izzo El-Habbib of Sudan leading the way.
Palami is hoping for the best in Monday's title match. But more importantly, he's hoping the Global sacrifice will bear fruit for the Azkals.
“I hope the investment of Global will help the Azkals,” he said.
Stallion will also go into the title match without coach Ernie Nierras, who will be in New York to coach the national women’s team, also known as the Malditas, in the Los Angeles Viking Cup.