A place in the 2017 AFC Cup knockout round beckons for Global-Cebu Football Club, after they notched an incredible comeback to win 4-2 away to Magwe FC at the Magway Stadium in Myanmar.
With the Philippine Women’s National Football Team returning from their successful 2018 AFC Women’s Asian Cup qualifiers, and the Philippines Football League set to launch soon, Global’s win adds to what has been a good week for local football.
Darryl Roberts provided a brace, while Hikaru Minegishi and Shu Sasaki scored a goal each to overturn the home team’s strikes from Naing Naing Kyaw and Naing Lin Tun. Global’s reward for their endeavors is the top place in Group F with 12 points.
Global started the contest in the worst way possible. The Filipino club dominated the contest and should have scored early if not for Dennis Villanueva and Sasaki missing their chances. Those misses haunted the away side when Naing Kyaw masterfully latched a cross and fired past Global goalie Patrick Deyto to open the scoring in the 38th minute.
Perhaps sensing that changes were needed immediately, Global coach Toshiaki Imai brought on Marco Casambre and Paolo Salenga for Paul Mulders and Germaine Agustien. The changes helped the Dan Palami club dictate the second half’s opening stages, and they came close to an equalizer when Salenga’s shot went painfully over the Magwe goal.
Nonetheless, it was only a matter of time before Global got the goals that their play deserved. Filipino-British defender Matthew Hartmann saw his shot blocked, only for Minegishi to fire the rebound into the net after 72 minutes of action.
Magwe’s floodgates were breached, and the dam was busted wide open courtesy of Roberts. He beat two Magwe defenders to hand Global the initiative in the 82nd minute, and converted a Casambre cross in the 83rd minute to effectively kill off the contest.
Sasaki added another nail to Magwe’s coffin in the 89th minute when he won the ball off one of the Burmese club’s defenders and calmly directed it home to seal the win. Not even Lin Tun’s goal in stoppage time dampened Global’s mood, as the latter secured a massive 4-2 win against Magwe.
Global will close out their group stage campaign with a home game against Cambodian club Boeung Ket Angkor FC on May 3, 8:35 PM, at the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila. Nothing less than a Global win would ensure safe passage to the next round.
Global won 2-0 against Boeung Ket the last time both teams played each other, as Mulders bagged a spectacular brace in that game.
Magwe XI: Lin Tun, Kyaw, H Aung, S Aung, Soe, Naing, Lwin, Linn, Phyo, Kyaw, Tun
Global XI: Deyto, Hartmann, Mulders, Villanueva, Aguinaldo, Minegishi, Agustien, Roberts, Sasaki, Dos Santos, Barbaso.