THE three remaining United Football League Cup semifinal slots are up for grabs on Thursday night as the knockout phase resumes in two different venues.
At the University of Makati pitch, Loyola Meralco battles Philippine Army at 5 p.m. with the winner earning the right to face Global in the Final Four.
Stallion and General Trias International then take to the field two hours later, with the survivor clinching a semifinal berth opposite the winner of the duel between Green Archers United and Pachanga slated at 8:30 p.m. over at the Nomads Sports Club in Parañaque.
All games are played in two 45-minute halves. In case of a tie at fulltime, two 15-minute halves will be added to determine a winner. A penalty shootout ensues should there still be another draw at the end of the extra period.
The Sparks, bannered by glamor boys James and Phil Younghusband, clinched a berth in the quarterfinals and finished on top of Group C after a 12-0 thrashing of Mendiola on Monday night.
Coming off the most lopsided victory of the tournament, the Sparks are easily the clear favorites in the curtain-raiser against the Troopers, who have three national team members of their own in Ed Sacapaño, Roel Gener, and Nestorio Margarse Jr.
Stallion, the leader of Group D and led by two sensational Spanish strikers in Rufo Sanchez and Joaco Caña, face a Korean-laden General Trias XI that emerged as the tournament’s dark horse after finishing second in Group A.
Meanwhile, Floriano “Tating” Pasilan Jr. is expected to be at the forefront of the Archers’ attack when they face Pachanga, the reigning Division 2 titlist whose campaigns is bolstered by Guam national team skipper Jason Cunliffe.
Global booked the first Final Four ticket with a stirring 2-1 quarterfinal victory over Kaya, thanks to a late goal from Misagh Bahadoran, on Tuesday night.