GLOBAL FC makes its anticipated return to the United Football League Cup as the 2016 UFL season kicks off on Saturday at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.
Suspended in the middle of the Cup last season for allegedly fielding an ineligible player, the two-time league champion takes on Pasargad at 6:15 p.m. in the highlight of the triple-bill offering.
The Group B matchup sandwiches two other skirmishes pitting former Division 2 teams Forza and Agila 4 o’clock, and newly promoted Division 2 champion Laos against JP Voltes in the nightcap at 8:30 p.m.
The spotlight, though, will mostly be on Global, which is eager to bounce back after a disappointing season where it failed to win a single trophy.
The Leigh Manson-coach side has made the necessary changes to reclaim lost glory, having acquired Filipino-Iranian midfielder Omid Nazari, a Swedish League veteran, who teams up with Azkals standouts Misagh Bahadoran, Amani Aguinaldo and Daisuke Sato.
Global, though, will miss national striker Mark Hartmann, will is sidelined until the middle of the year after injuring his knee last December.
Former Global players Yu Hoshide, Masaki Yanagawa, and Satoshi Otomo have transferred to JP Voltes, the Japanese-owned side, which also signed Lemuel Unabia, Camelo Tacusalme and J Baguiro on loan from Ceres.
Laos picked up Iranian midfielder Hamed Hajimehdi, who joins compatriot Shayan Jafaridestjerdi.