Philippines 2-0 Myanmar: Azkals ease past minnows
The Azkals progressed past the AFFSC 2012 group stages after beating Myanmar in their final group match of the campaign and will now face Group B's winner in the semi-finals
By Kenneth Ho Jun Hao
Philippines have qualified for their second consecutive Suzuki Cup semi-finals after a 2-0 victory over Myanmar.
Philippines and Myanmar kicked off their last group match of the Suzuki Cup 2012 on Friday evening, with both teams looking to progress to the semi-finals, along with Thailand.
Both teams needed a win to secure progression, though a draw for Philippines could have put them through provided other results went their way.
It was end-to-end stuff in the first half, with both teams eager to attack and grab the lead.
However, moves kept breaking down in the final third to prevent any clear-cut chances for both sides, with the only shots on-targets being speculative shots from Phil Younghusband.
Philippines could have grabbed the lead just before the break, when Angel Guirado, who was substituted in for Denis Wolf in the 35th minute, sent in a sweeping crossing which fell just behind Younghusband.
Just after the break, Philippines grabbed the lead when Jason De Jong’s long ball found Younghusband, who took the ball down with his thigh and took on two defenders before finishing with aplomb.
Myanmar tried to come back but were profligate with their chances, and were best summed up with Soe Kyaw Kyaw’s 76th minute diving header, which was cleared just wide of goal.
Guirado then secured Philippines’ passage into the semi-finals in injury time, breaking away from Myanmar’s backline and holding off Thein Than Win to drive his shot past Thiha Si Thu.
Philippines will now meet the winners of Group B in the Suzuki Cup 2012 semi-finals.
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