24 November 2017

24 NOV WEEKLY CEO COLUMN: THE PFL FINALS SERIES

With 2 more matches to go in the Philippines Football League (PFL) Regular Season, the four clubs qualifying for the PFL Finals Series is certain.
FC Meralco Manila, Ceres Negros FC, Kaya FC Makati, and Global Cebu FC have all made it to the Final Series. I take this opportunity to congratulate each club for their qualification. They will now compete to become the inaugural champion of the PFL Season 2017.
For today’s column, I will discuss the match dates and the applicable provisions under the PFL Tournament Regulations (“Regulations”) for the PFL Finals Series.
Format and Dates:
1st leg Semi-Finals (Fixture 1 A) on 02 December 2017 will be between Team 1 vs. Team 4 and 2nd leg Semi-Finals (Fixture 1 B) will be on 09 December 2017 with Team 4 playing at home.
1st Leg Semi-Finals (Fixture 2 A) on 03 December 2017 will be between Team 2 vs. Team 3 and 2nd leg Semi-Finals (Fixture 2 B) will be on 10 December 2017 with Team 3 playing at home.
Teams finishing 1 to 4 in the final league standing in the Regular Season are ranked Team 1 to 4 accordingly.
3rd/4th Place match will be played between Loser of Semi-final (Fixture 1) vs Loser of Semi-final (Fixture 2) on 16 December 2017
Final’s will be played between Winner of Semi-final (Fixture 1) vs Winner of Semi-final (Fixture 2) on 16 December 2017
The Team finishing first position at the conclusion of the Regular Season will have the option to play the 1st leg Semi-final (Fixture 1) either at home or away.
The Loser of Fixture 1 will be entitled to host the 3rd/4th Place match and the winner of Fixture 1 will have the option to host the Final. The selection however will be made by the PFL based on variety of factors including, but not limited to, venue availability, commercial and marketing considerations.
Procedure to Determine the Winner – Semi Final Stage, Finals & 3rd/4th
As per Article 2.14 of the Regulations, the winner of the semifinals will be determined by the highest number of goals over the two legs or the highest number of away goals scored (away goal rule) over the two legs.
If the winning team cannot be decided by the above criteria, Article 2.15 A. of the Regulations provides for an extra time (two equal periods of fifteen minutes played) immediately after the end of the 2nd leg match. Article 2.16 of the Regulations also states that at the conclusion of the extra-time, and no goals are scored, penalty kicks will be taken to determine the winner, else if both teams score the same number of goals, the away team will advance under the away goal rule.
For the Final and the 3rd/4th Place match, Articles 2.17 and 2.18 of the Regulations provide for an extra-time of two periods if the scores are tied after the conclusion of the match. If scores are tied after extra-time, penalty kicks will be taken to determine the winner.
The final match between Global Cebu FC vs. Ceres Negros FC on 28 November 2017 will decide the final positioning of the four clubs in the League Standing for the Regular Season. You could catch this match via livestreaming.
On behalf of the PFL, I would like to wish the top four teams good luck as we look forward in crowning the first Philippines Football League champions.
Lazarus J. Xavier
http://philippinesfootballleague.com/2017/11/24/weekly-ceo-column-pfl-finals-series/

MATCH REPORT: FC MERALCO MANILA 0-0 CERES-NEGROS FC

League leaders FC Meralco Manila and Ceres-Negros FC settled with a 0-0 draw last November 24 at the PFF National Training Center in Carmona Cavite. The draw was a first for both squads who are currently on top of the PFL table.
There were very few chances in the match for both teams who were cautious in preparing for the semis. The first attempt on goal came on the 2nd minute when Jinggoy Valmayor intercepted a bad pass from thirty yards before unleashed a shot the was way over the bar.
Meralco owned most of the chances as the home’s squad capitalized on Ceres’ slow build up to threaten the backline. Ashley Flores was the main recipient of the counterattacks but centerbacks in Super Herrera and Josh Grommen were there to control the play.
The hosts created opportunities near the halftime whistle but Valmayor and company could not find the target. The half ended with an uneventful 0-0 scoreline.
The Sparks continued to threaten by the hour mark after a foul by Bienvenido Marañon on Franco de la Torre in a dangerous position. Taj Minniecon however foiled the resulting free kick after it was over the crossbar.
Alvin Sarmiento would have a try on goal after he slid into the box in the 67th. The wingbacks attempt was however tamed by the Ceres keeper. Valmayor earned a chance minutes later when a clearance from a corner fell to him at the edge of the box. His attempt however was just a foot wide.
The best chance for Manila came in the 80th minute after a long drive from Sarmiento reached an unmarked Valmayor in front of goal. The striker however mishit the ball which looped over the bar.
Roland Muller produced three fines saves three minutes from time to earn his eight clean sheet of the season. The Ceres keeper punched out a brilliant free kick from Curt Dizon before stopping two successive shots off a corner.
A straight red was given to Diego Fornea in injury time after an altercation with Jeffrey Christaens who also earned a yellow. The match ended with both squads earning a point from the goalless affair.
“It was a very interesting game,” said Ceres Coach Risto Vidakovic. “We came from two games in Ilocos, it was very important that we keep the players safe without injuries. I think nobody get injured today so it’s a very successful day for us,” he added.
The Ceres mentor already has one eye on the final regular season match versus Global and is much aware of the constraints leading to Cebu.
“Some players, they will be suspended for the next game so we will see who will play there because it is not easy to for anybody. We will go there with what we have left and try to compete there,” Vidakovic added.
The final regular season match is set on November 28 with Ceres-Negros traveling to Cebu. A draw will ensure first place while a loss would mean second in the classification.
http://ceresfootball.com/match-report-fc-meralco-manila-0-0-ceres-negros-fc/

23 November 2017

PFL : Fc Meralco Manila 0-0 Ceres-Negros Fc

Today's game against Ceres will be aired on channel 107 and channel 109 on Cignal TV LIVE at 3pm.
If you don't have Cignal TV then watch the LIVE stream here, which we are told will be the same feed as the telecast.

FC Meralco Manila vs Ceres Negros FC
Philippines Football League
November 24th 2017 - 3:00 pm (Asia/Manila time)
Carmona, Philippines

Livestream link :

PFL - Matchweek 25

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We're down to the final three games of the season!

The League weekend starts at the PFF National Training Center in Carmona, Cavite as FC Meralco Manila try to defend their #1 spot from Ceres Negros FC.

On Saturday, Davao Aguilas and JPV Marikina will play their final games of the season. The visiting team will be able to finish their season on a good note as victory will see them overtake Stallion Laguna FC on the table. On the other hand, will Davao be able to reward their faithful fans this season with a win?

The last game of the season will see the Busmen make their final stop before the Finals Series in Cebu.

22 November 2017

UPDATE: Singapore Cup final to go on after initial fears



UPDATE: The RHB Singapore Cup final will go on after Global Cebu settled a pay dispute with their players.
Speaking after a players’ meeting with the club’s management, Global captain Misagh Bahadoran revealed that issues have been ironed out.
“This was a misunderstanding between the club and us players, and I’m glad to say the problem has been fixed, and we will be flying to Singapore tomorrow,” he said, declining to reveal details of the solution.
Bahadoran believes that despite the club's difficulties, Global have enough to beat S.League champions Albirex on Saturday.
“We are coming to win the Cup Final, there’s nothing else on our mind."
But this Saturday's final between Albirex Niigata and Global Cebu may not even take place.
The Football Association of Singapore (FAS) is planning an extravaganza to close what has been an uncertain 2017, but the Philippine side may not even show up in Singapore.
Sources revealed that Global players are still owed wages, some of them for up to six months, and players are refusing to get on the plane if they are not paid at least a month of what is owed to them.
Speaking to The New Paper, Global captain Misagh Bahadoran confirmed that a cloud is indeed hanging over the club, but is something that can be surmounted.
"This year we are going through a difficult time. There are just two players owed six months' salary, most of us are owed between four and five months' (wages)," said the Philippines international.
"But I don't think the management will let that (boycott of the Singapore Cup final) happen.
"I've been with Global for about seven years now, and sometimes salaries will be late, but you never see players not get what is owed to them."
Bahadoran revealed earlier this afternoon that he was en route to a meeting with the club's management to address this specific issue, with other sources confirming that the management was due to meet its backroom staff later in the day.
TNP understands that Global are in the process of a management change.
Bahadoran believes that despite difficulties, Global have enough to beat Great Eastern-Hyundai S.League champions Albirex if they do find their way to Singapore.
"We have good players, and a strong team. Once we step onto the field, we will get the job done. When we last came to Singapore, we brought only 13 players, but we still won the game," he said.

Global faced Hougang United in a two-legged semi-final in September with only 13 players on its roster - due to registration issues - but beat the Cheetahs 4-3 on aggregate.
"We are having a hard time now, but we were having a similarly hard time last year," said Bahadoran on the issue of late wages.
"But we still won the (Philippine) championship and the cup."


PFL - Updated League table

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Only three matches remaining in PFL group stage.

22 NOV PFL ADVISORY: M107 JPV MARIKINA FC VS DAVAO AGUILAS FC

The Philippines Football League announces the decision regarding the match between JPV Marikina FC and Davao Aguilas FC last 22 October 2017 at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.
JPV Marikina FC is found responsible for the non compliance of Article 12 of the PFL Tournament Regulations.
JPV Markina FC is found responsible for the abandonment of M107 JPV Marikina FC vs Davao Aguilas FC on 22 October 2017 pursuant to Article 10.9 of the Regulations.
The final result of the M107 is: JPV Marikina FC 0-3 Davao Aguilas FC.
JPV Marikina FC is also warned that a repeat violation of this provision will be met with a more severe punishment.

http://philippinesfootballleague.com/2017/11/22/pfl-advisory-m107-jpv-marikina-fc-vs-davao-aguilas-fc/