Wednesday, April 19, 2017
MANILA – Ceres-Negros Football Club-Philippines will gun for a payback win when it faces the dangerous Hanoi of Vietnam in the group stage of 2017 AFC Cup tonight at the Panaad Park and Stadium in Bacolod City.
The Negros Occidental-based squad hopes to bounce back from a 3-0 defeat to Malaysia’s Felda United FC last April 4 at the Shah Alam Stadium in Shah Alam, Malaysia.
Prior to the stinging defeat against the Malaysian team, Ceres-Negros was untainted with its 1-1 Hanoi draw, 5-0 win over Singapore’s Tampines Rovers and scoreless tiff with Felda United.
Ceres-Negros is currently at joint second place in the Group G standings with Felda United at five points, while Hanoi is on top with eight points on two wins and two draws.
“As I said before everyone has the possibility to qualify, so we have now a home game and we have to fight for that. So if we win, then we have options in the last game,” said Ceres-Negros head coach Risto Vidakovic.
“In football everything is possible so you never know. Maybe when you expect a win, you draw. Maybe when you expect a draw, you lose. So you never know what’s gonna happen in football,” he added.
However, Ceres-Negros remains shorthanded with Patrick Reichelt, Simone Rota and Kevin Ingreso still recovering from their injuries. Filipino-Iranian-Swede Omid Nazari is also unavailable.
Bannering the Ceres-Negros crew are Spaniards Manuel Herrera and Fernando Rodriguez, Michael Casas, Iain Ramsay, Bienvenido Marañon, Jose Elmer Porteria, Carlos De Murga and Manuel Ott, who is returning from a one-game suspension.
The Ceres-Negros team needs to top their group after the double-round eliminations for them to advance to the zonal semifinals and play against the Asia zone winner, with the victor moving up to the zonal finals./PN