Philippine Azkals plays in Asian Cup for the first time

For the first time in history, the Philippines will play in AFC Asian Cup. Thanks to the football renaissance that started in the early 2010s, which also marked the birth of Azkals Pilipinas Futbol team.

During 2019 AFC Asian Cup qualification third round, they successfully topped their group with three wins and three draws, to book ticket to the UAE. The rising level of football success in the Philippines has given hopes for Filipinos when the Azkals will make their debut this month.

But as expected, Azkals will have to face tough battles right from the get go, battling Pool C powerhouse teams China, South Korea and Kyrgyzstan.

Phil Younghusband, team captain and longtime face of the Philippine Azkals earlier encourages the Filipino community to come and watch the matches live:

“We’ve got plans to visit the Filipino community to rally the troops and make sure we make each game feel like a home game,” he said on the sidelines of Friday’s draw at the Armani Hotel in the Burj Khalifa, Dubai Downtown.

In an interview with Gulfnews, he added:

“That’s important because we will be going into the games with a handicap due to the quality of teams we are up against, but hopefully our fans will make it more of a leveller,” he added of the Azkals’ (Street Dogs) first ever Asian Cup participation.

Azkals will play South Korea, China and Kyrgyzstan in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Tickets are available at AED25, 50 and 75 denominations. Below are the match dates and venues:
  • Monday, Jan.7 at 5:30pm Philippines vs South Korea | Al Maktoum Stadium (Dubai)
  • Friday, Jan.11 at 5:30pm Philippines vs China | Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium (Abu Dhabi)
  • Wednesday Jan. 16 at 5:30pm Philippines vs Kyrgyzstan | Rashid Stadium (Dubai)

Official lineup and schedule from AFC Asian Cup Facebook page
For updates on match venues and other schedule, do follow AFC Asian Cup on Facebook or visit

Fans in the UAE, as you prepare to watch and support the team, check out this chant from Ultras Filipinas:

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