FIFA Women’s World Cup: Filipinas remain upbeat heading into New Zealand match

Despite a 0-2 loss to Switzerland in their history-making first match in the Group A of the FIFA Women’s World Cup in Dunedin on Friday, July 21, the Filipinas stayed upbeat and are looking forward to their virtually must-win match against host New Zealand on Tuesday, July 25, in Wellington.

“We can only bring it up from here, stay true to what we are and keep on going,” goalkeeper Olivia McDaniel, who was stellar at the net and mostly held the La Nati at bay that kept them competitive for much of the game at the chilly Forsyth Barr Stadium, stated.

“We got an unfortunate PK (penalty kick) but we learn from these mistakes and get ready to go for the next one,” added the SoCal Union FC mainstay of Ramona Bachmann’s completed penalty in the dying minutes of the first half following Jessika Cowart’s tackle of a Swiss player inside the box.

Katrina Guillou (right) stalks a Swiss player. [contributed photo]
Katrina Guillou (right) stalks a Swiss player. [contributed photo]

“Given this loss, we’ll think what we did wrong and how to get better and apply it to the next game,” added the goalie, who will likely be back for duty and play a prominent role against the Ferns at the Sky Stadium in Wellington on Tuesday.

Striker Katrina Guillou, whose potential ice-breaking marker early in the match was ruled offside, shared the same sentiments, saying: “It was a close call but we still have two group stahe games and hopefully we can pick it up from there.

“We started out pretty strong and we made things difficult for them (the Swiss). We were popping into spaces and covering a lot of gaps so it was good. Unfortunately we gave up two goals, but it was our first World Cup in our debutant game. We still have lot of things to look forward to.’

Midfielder Sarah Eggesvik was as on the same page as her celebrated teammates.

“We will keep on fighting and have two more games to look forward to,” she declared.

While tipping his hat off to the La Nati for being the better team last Friday, Australian Alen Stajcic was also moving on, stressing that “the next game will be a different game.”

Both Stajcic and players appreciated the small but animated Filipino fans who braved the bone-chilling weather in Dunedin, and was banking on them to show their strong support fortheir remaining group matches.

“Maraming salamat for all the kababayans who came out to night and we love you so much. We can only thank you from the bottom of our hearts and watching our backs,” McDaniel said for all of them. “Please continue to support this team, it is a very special group and we love you with all our hearts.”

The Filipinas, who are also supported by the Philippine Sports Commission, returned to their base camp on a chartered flight here Saturday noon and will be packing their bags anew the next day and head for Wellington.

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