Azkals commended for bringing new interest to football in the country

By Cheska D. Geli

Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia commended the senior team of the Philippine National Football for bringing new interest to football in the country during their courtesy call at the Cebu Capitol yesterday.

The team had their training session yesterday morning and had their lunch at Marriott Hotel before they headed to the Capitol for a courtesy call.

Garcia said she was happy to have met the team, which was led by head coach Michael Weiss, team captain Aly Borromeo, who introduced the rest of the players, and co-captain Emilio “Chieffy” Caligdong.

Borromeo, Caligdong, Ian Araneta and Nestor Margarse arrived early morning yesterday to reunite with the team. The four left last Saturday to play in the United Football League games.

“Cebu is charming. It’s a nice place. We are happy to be here and be accommodated by the Cebuanos,” said German coach Michael Weiss.

Aside from other players, Cebu Football Association (CFA) president Richard Montayre, who is proposing a Governor’s Cup for football, attended the event along with CFA board member Bro. Mari Aberasturi.

Garcia had considered the proposal from the CFA Chairman after it also explained how it can complement the existing Governor’s Cup for volleyball, which is held annually for LGU-based teams in the province.

“But if this will push through, the Azkals should also be here,” Garcia said.

Weiss, in reply, said that as long as the team will be invited, they would be willing to be part of the event.

Meanwhile, hundreds of fans gathered at The Terraces in Ayala Center Cebu to get a glimpse of their favorite booters in the Azkals Mall Tour.


Caligdong from the Air Force was the first one to perform his juggling skills in front of the screaming crowd. He was shortly followed by Fil-foreigners Phil and James Younghusband, Misagh Bahadoran, Neil Etheridge and Simon Greatwich whose trick was highlighted when the goalkeeper took off Greatwich’s shirt.

The crowd was asking Paolo Pascual to be the next to perform but the young Cebuano gave a message of gratitude instead.

“Salamat kaayo sa suporta. We are so happy and blessed that you are all here,” Pascual said. Sun.Star Cebu