Already beset with problems before the match, the Philippine Azkals suffered a 2-0 defeat at the hands of host nation Singapore at its National Stadium to end their Tri-Nations Series campaign on a sour note.
Beforehand, the Philippines can only name four substitutes on the bench, with two of them goalkeepers in Quincy Kammeraad and Kevin Ray Hansen. Several players tested positive for COVID-19.
It only took 10 minutes for the Singaporeans to break the deadlock. Safuwan Baharudin, a defender who plays for Selangor in the Malaysia Super League, found the back of the net. He headed home his teammate Shahdah Sulaiman’s corner.
Things then got worse for the Filipinos. Defender Diego Bardanca got himself sent off at the 39th minute after receiving two yellow cards. Singapore then sealed the victory in the 90th minute when Hougang United forward Shawal Anuar shot past goalie Neil Etheridge.
The result means that the Filipinos lost both their matches against Malaysia and Singapore in this Tri-Nations Series. Up next for them is their crunch AFC Asian Cup 2023 third-round qualifiers in Mongolia.
Singapore XI: Hassan (GK), Irfan, Harris ©, Safuwan, Zulqarnaen, Shahdan, Adam, Nazrul, Song, Ikhsan, Amy.
Philippines XI: Etheridge (GK), De Murga, Linares, Ingreso, Curran, Hartmann, Schrock ©, Reichelt, Porteria, Maranon.