Loyola Meralco Sparks star Phil Younghusband admitted that their powerhouse team is not yet in tip-top shape in their 3-2 victory over the Green Archers FC in their opening match in the United Football League.
Younghusband scored two goals in the match before the Green Archers made the match interesting by tallying two goals in the second half with a one-man advantage.
The Azkals star said that the team is still finding its match shape as they only started training for the UFL last week.
“Personally, I wasn’t supposed to play because I wasn’t even able to run out there. I wasn’t even running and sprinting when I scored the goals,” said Younghusband.
“Our performance was ok. It’s what you expect for a team at the start of the season that’s been back in training for a week. You really can’t expect us to fire from all cylinders.”
The Sparks survived after Taku Yoshioka was booked for a red card inside the box but got a break when the penalty kick was missed, not once but twice. With Green Archers on the verge of breaking the ice, goalkeeper Ref Cuaresma got a break when the retake was wide left. The first penalty kick was also wide to the right.
But Cuaresma came up big seven minutes before the final whistle as he deflected a Green Archers’ shot from inside the box to prevent a tie.
“Ref is one of the best goalkeepers in the league and we always thank him for all the saves he make especially in the last minutes when it means more,” Younghusband said.
“But give credit to the Green Archers, they made it hard for us.”
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