THE Philippine Football Federation said it has not received official communication from Brunei regarding the reported withdrawal of its football team from the Asian Football Confederation Challenge Cup Qualifiers, which kick off on Friday at the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila.
The news went online on Wednesday in a report by the Brunei Times saying its country has withdrawn from the four-nation tournament from March 22 to 26 because of “unavoidable circumstances.”
But PFF general secretary Ed Gastanes said they will only make a move if and when they receive a formal notice of a pullout from Brunei, which is supposed to face the Azkals on opening day on Friday.
“We don’t act on the basis of those reports. Everything is still speculation on our part,” Gastanes said in a phone conversation on Wednesday.
The Azkals face Cambodia on Sunday, before taking on Turkmenistan two days later.
“I think all the teams will be present in tomorrow’s team manager’s meeting. Everything will be clearer tomorrow,” the lawyer added.
There will be repercussions to the qualification scenario if Brunei indeed pulls out, making it tougher for the Azkals to advance to the main tournament in Maldives next year.