WILD cheers greeted the Philippine men's national football team during a short visit at the Ateneo de Davao University (Addu) Matina campus Friday morning.
The RP players and the coaching staff were welcomed by some students upon entering the campus, while hundreds more were waiting for them at the school's sports complex.
It even took a few minutes to get the eager crowd seated as most of them joined the team at the stage asking for autographs and photo souvenirs.
When the students were seated, head coach Simon Alexander Mcmenemy was given the chance to talk.
Mcmenemy acknowledged the students, who were seated in groups and identified by the different colors of their shirts. The children waved their hands in response to his greetings.
McMenemy then asked who among the students play football. When only a few raised their hands, he encouraged them, "Play football. It's a great sport to learn especially for Filipinos."
He also asked who play basketball and addressed those who raised their hands to try football as well. He called one student who doesn't play football to join him on the stage and asked him why he doesn't play.
The student said he doesn't know the sport but Coach Mcmenemy encouraged him to learn football.
Philip James Younghusband, the most popular to the kids among his other teammates, also inspired the students to play football.
"Play football. It's a great game!" Younghusband said.
After the short messages, the team signed autographs and obliged themselves for pictorial. Ateneo teachers and non-teaching staff also had their pictures taken with the team.
The team members then boarded two passenger jeepneys to bring them back to Casa Leticia Ecoland and were scheduled to check out at 12 noon and catch their 3 p.m. flight to Manila.
The team's 10-day training camp in Davao was held in coordination with the Davao Football Association (DFA). (MLSA )
Sun Star Davao