Tag Archives: Daniel Gadia

UAAP Players Relish Azkals Chance

Icko De Guzman No Comments

Midway in the second half of the Philippines’ 1-3 loss against Bahrain, coach Thomas Dooley opted for a younger set of players on the pitch.

Paolo Bugas came on for Iain Ramsay in the 64th minute. Fitch Arboleda followed in the 72nd minute replacing Misagh Bahadoran, and Daniel Gadia made his Azkals’ debut when he replaced skipper Phil Younghusband eight minutes from time. The three substitutes, along with starters Patrick Deyto and Amani Aguinaldo all share something in common — they are all homegrown and went through the UAAP.

Gadia has, in fact, one more playing year left with the University of the Philippines, who are the current UAAP champions. Bugas also has one more year at Far Eastern University. Arboleda graduated from University of the East and is now an assistant coach for his alma mater. Aguinaldo is enrolled at the University of the Philippines and formerly played for Far Eastern as well. Deyto graduated from De La Salle University and is a product of the Hans Smit brand of football.

“It was a good opportunity for me and the other players in the team,” said Bugas in Filipino after the match. “It was a different feeling because in the past, we were rivals in the UAAP, but now we are playing together for the national team.”

“It was refreshing to see that we UAAP players were on the pitch (for the national team),” said Gadia.

It was a pivotal moment for Gadia when his name was called to come in on the pitch. The University of the Philippines standout dedicated his first international cap to fallen UP teammate Rogie Maglinas.

“I started visualizing what to do in the game (when my name was called up),” added Gadia. “ (Rogie and I) both dreamed to play in the national team. Now, I will continue his dream and hope to play more for the national team.”

Bugas and Gadia added that they are slowly adapting to the system of Azkals head coach Thomas Dooley.

“I don’t want to waste this opportunity,” said Bugas, the FEU Tamaraw. “We’re glad because Coach Dooley gives us a chance to play.”

“It was a bigger opportunity for the young ones to dream that they can emulate what we have done,” added Gadia. “They just need hard work and dedication and they can follow the footsteps of the senior players.”

The Azkals coach praised all the three substitutes for the effort they put in despite the final score.

“They all did well,” said Dooley about the trio. “I wanted Gadia to have a little bit of playing time in midfield to get some good touches and play a little bit. Bugas obviously is a great player, has a great future we just have to get him more in training. Fitch (Arboleda) is good, he’s a guy that can be at the right place at the right time.”

The Philippines face DPR Korea on Monday, October 10, at the Rizal Memorial Stadium. Kick off is at 8:00 PM. —  CAL

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