Ali Maali (Dubai)
The Filipinos have spread far from the borders of their country significantly since the last century, so thousands of them appear in countries with greater football culture and capabilities, but the picture began to differ within the football team, through the returning immigrant elements who had different nationalities.
Basketball has the largest share of Philippine sports, and therefore the football team, which is called the “stray dogs” team, had a lesser share of popularity and financial reward, and eyes began to turn to those outside the Philippines to seek their help in football.
The Philippines, despite its few titles, had a special place in the fabric of Asian football, as it participated in its first international match on Asian soil when it won the inaugural East Asian Games against China in 1913. The former Philippine player, Paulito Alcantara, was a historical scorer with Barcelona Until he was surpassed by Argentine Lionel Messi years ago, and he played with Barcelona in two periods, the first from 1912 to 1916, then he returned again 1918 and lasted for 9 years and scored 143 goals.
The Philippine team had never qualified for the Asian Cup since its inception in 1956, until it succeeded in 2019, when the UAE hosted these finals, which is its first continental appearance, and the team lost its three matches. In the qualifiers for the 2022 World Cup and the 2023 Asian Cup, which are currently being held in the Emirate of Sharjah, the Philippines team is present alongside Syria, China, the Maldives and Guam, hoping to draw a new map for his country in the yellow continent. The Philippines team’s chance to qualify for the World Cup was lost after occupying third place in Group A after Syria with 21 points and China with 13 points, as it scored only 7 points out of 8 matches, but the hope of qualifying for the Asian Cup remains.
There are between 8 to 12 different nationalities coexisting in one dressing room on the list of “stray dogs”, and the mother is always Filipino and the father is between Germany, England, America, Denmark, Switzerland, Holland, Spain and Australia, so that these diverse cultures of birth and upbringing are involved in one spherical entity.
Most of the “naturalized” players come from Germany, including goalkeeper Bernd, Mike Ott, Stefan Schrock and Patrick Jerry, from Spain Carlos Alberto and Angel Gerado, from England Mark Hertmann and Oliver Pias, from Switzerland Michael Kempter and Michael Snoel, from the Netherlands Justin Bass, and from Denmark Kevin Minosa.