The Philippine Azkals banked on an impressive first half to shut out Guam, 3-0, during their friendly game at the Panaad Stadium in Bacolod City on Independence Day Tuesday.
The Azkals capitalized on Guam's porous defense in the first 45 minutes as Filipino-Spanish players Angel Guirado and Carli De Murga took turns in attacking the goal.
It was Guirado who scored the first goal for Philippine side, pulling off a curling shot from outside the goal box in the 8th minute.
Guam’s keeper Dallas Jaye actually touched the ball, but the shot still made its way to the back of the net.
De Murga later sparked a good offensive play that led to another goal for the Philippine side in the 12th minute.
He traded passes with teammate Marvin Angeles before making it 2-0 for the Azkals.
Guirado struck again in the first half stoppage time (45+2) with a glancing header off Dennis Cagara’s free kick, making it 3-0 for the Azkals.
Guam tightened up its defense in the second half, preventing 3 goal attempts by Filipino striker Denis Wolf.
The Filipinos eventually settled for a 3-0 score to wrap up their 3-game series with foreign teams.
Guirado was very pleased with their victory, which came after two successive draws against Malaysia and Indonesia.
They first settled for a scoreless draw against the Malayan Tigers on June 2 at the Shah Alam Stadium in Malaysia.
This was followed by a 2-2 deadlock against Timnas Indonesia at the Rizal Memorial Stadium on June 5.
“We had two draws already so it's a time for us to win,” said Guirado through his interpreter Rafa Garcia.
De Murga, for his part, marked a milestone in his career by scoring his first goal as an Azkal.
“My first goal with the Azkals, I'm very happy. Coach [Hans Weiss] wanted from the fullback more attack... so I put all my best in attack and scored my first goal,” he said.
He also credited Angeles for helping make the goal.
“That was a good pass from Marwin Angeles,” said De Murga. “He made an elegant play.”
The friendlies are part of the Azkals’ preparations for the 2012 AFF Suzuki Cup in November.
The Philippines is now riding on a 4-game unbeaten run in football.