Saturday, June 30, 2012

Bernard James, Draft Day Winner


The second round of the NBA Draft is pretty much all about what you unearth, what you find. Whether positive (case in point, Isaiah Thomas for Sacramento was last year's Mr. Irrelevant, now he's pretty much set himself as the point guard of a backcourt that has lottery selection in Tyreke Evans and of course, Jimmer) or negative (that Qatari player named Tanguy Ngombo, the guy David Kahn tried to pull a fast one over us all in that same draft).
The Cleveland Cavaliers had a surplus of picks and with its roster and considering the relative youth of that team, did not really have the need for the second round selections, especially considering the international crop is what we can say is crapshoot. So, they arranged a deal with the Dallas Mavericks, who was looking to trade down from the 17th overall selection, in order for them to make its cap room flexible enough for what we all are calling Plan D, D for Deron Williams. The deal was made more palatable since a big man named Tyler Zeller was still available, and so, the Cavs packaged the 24th, 33rd and 34th selections to the Mavs for the 17th selection. At 24, Dallas took James Cunningham, an Oregon State swingman who might be of help to them as a versatile role player. Moving down seven spots means less money allocated on their cap room for the pick and second-round selections are relatively cheap.
This is what happened when they were to pick again at 33rd overall. 
Bernard James, you are a true winner in this draft. Considering your skill set and the players currently ahead of you in the depth chart for Rick Carlisle to peruse, you might just see some action in the upcoming season.
The Florida State Seminole may be thankful that he was selected in the NBA Draft, unlike some of the more prominent names that went undrafted, but more importantly, the American people are thankful for your service to the country.
And that, maybe the best thing about that.

Friday, June 29, 2012

My 2012 MLB All-Star Ballot

Today serves as the last day of voting online for the 2012 MLB All-Star Game. As sometimes with what I do, I cast in and publicize my ballot. Here are the ones I voted.


1st Base - Paul Konerko
2nd Base - Robinson Cano
3rd Base - Miguel Cabrera
Shortstop - Derek Jeter
Catcher - Mike Napoli
Designated Hitter - Edwin Encarnacion
Outfielders - Jose Bautista, Josh Hamilton, Adam Jones


1st Base - Joey Votto
2nd Base - Jose Altuve
3rd Base - David Wright
Shortstop - Rafael Furcal
Catcher - Yadier Molina
Outfielders - Andrew McCutchen, Matt Holliday, Ryan Braun

They also have a write-in system, but you put a name there and you will slot someone out from the position you voted. If not for that aspect, would have gone for David Ortiz (AL) and Bryce Harper (NL).

Remember that the winner here gets to secure homefield advantage in the World Series, arguably one of the most preposterous things I have heard.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Let Westbrook be Westbrook

"No. Let me get this straight. What you guys say doesn't make me happy, doesn't make me sad. Doesn't do anything. It's all about my team and us winning a game. I don't have a personal challenge against you guys, and it's not me against the world. It's not the world against me. It's me and my teammates trying to win."
The quote came from Russell Westbrook in a postgame conference addressing the notion of media criticism on him as posed to him by Gregg Doyel of CBS Sports. This is how Gregg asked that question:
Russell, you've taken some heat, whether you know it or not you have, but tonight, of course, you shouldn't take a whole lot.  Was there any vindication at all?  I know you guys didn't win, but personally do you feel okay about it? 

He finished with 43 pts on 20/32 shooting. Made all three of his free throw attempts. Missed all three of his attempts beyond the arc. Grabbed 7 rebounds. Issued 5 dimes. Stole the ball once.

But most of you, especially the media, will remember his third personal foul and his third turnover. Both of those came in the dying seconds. Because this is about the narrative. That Russell can't be a point guard in this team. That Russell is shooting the ball too much. That Russell needs to defer.

Sure, the little gaffes cost them game, but with Durant effectively muzzled by Lebron James and Shane Battier, he carried the offensive load. You cannot question his effort, his aggression and his will to win.

I am really sick and tired of how some of the media have savagely attacked him and his play. I hope his effort did not go in vain in this defeat.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Designing the Get-Up, Rajo Laurel style

It has been said that in order to play good, sometimes, it helps to look good, too.

The Philippines will be sending 30 delegates to the 2012 Olympic Games in London, composed of athletes, coaches and officials. It may be a small team, but a fighting one at that. After all, they carry the hopes and dreams of a nation seeking the success of nabbing its first-ever Olympic gold medal.

One of the events that people look forward to are the Opening Ceremonies, where everyone gets to see everyone go around the Olympic Stadium and parade. For that particular task, the POC has assigned well-known and world-renowed fashion designer Rajo Laurel to make the clothes for this particular occasion.

Working with the barong tagalog in mind for simplicity and elegance, Rajo intends to use black, gold and mocha as the colors. The main accessory to the barong is a salakot gilded with gold leaf.

This is Rajo's design for the Opening Ceremonies uniform.

For the Filipino Olympian

For the Filipina Olympian

The embroidery (as seen below) for the barong is inspired by the palay, which symbolizes good luck and fortune. He is to use dark cobalt and blue threads to weave the embroidery onto the barong.

The design looks promising and hopefully, be able to provide the luck and charm that our athletes can get.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Blog Outsourcing - June 18, 2012 edition

Welcome to the latest edition of The Morning After.

It was Father's Day, yesterday, and although I did nothing much of note for that Sunday, I hope you spent the time honoring your dad. Come to think of it, the best way to celebrate the occasion is to honor him every single day of the year.

Meanwhile, the Miami Heat escaped with the victory against the Oklahoma City Thunder, 91-85. The series has been the all about the narrative. Will Lebron be clutch? (he has been so far, in general) Is Russell Westbrook what is wrong with Oklahoma City? (not really) It is so distinct that it has been simplified enough to that and simply that.

Meanwhile, love the NBA and Turner collaboration. Having that enables TNT's Charles Barkley and Shaq doing pregame and post-game for NBA TV. Chuck, as always, is the loquacious one. From defending Westbrook from the excessive criticisms by his fellow members of the media, to praising Lebron James, to saying Peter Vecsey is a douchebag, and to the seminal moment with the Wonder Woman. Chuck is the gift to bloggers all around.

Here forth are the links after the jump.

Teen Azkals Seeking to Sustain Philippines Football

With the advent of football in the country, there is a better awareness for the sport. You can thank our senior national team for returning it to the consciousness of the Pinoy, whether people view it as a positive or negative.

But in order to keep the growth of the sport to be sustainable, there has to be a trickle-down effect from the seniors all the way to the grassroots level. We still have much to improve on these things, but slowly but surely, the path is there to be taken. We have heard of the success of the U-13 team (more known as the "Little Azkals") overseas. Our U-22 team is currently playing friendlies to prepare them for the upcoming AFC U-22 qualifiers.

On June 16 at the OneA Events Center in Antipolo City, the management of the Philippines U-19 men's football team (more commonly known as the "Teen Azkals"), along with some representatives of the Philippine Football Federation, met with some members of the online social media to share and spread the message about the sport and the team.

According to Mr. Alvin Carranza, who serves as the U-19 Team Manager, they are about to conduct their search for new members for the team, with those interested can go to the University of the Philippines - Diliman on July 7 & 8, while those based in the VisMin area can go to the football grounds of San Carlos City, Negros Occidental on August 4 to 12. (Questions relating to this can be relayed to the Teen Azkals' Facebook page)

PFF Coach and Technical Director Aris Caslib noted that the team is looking for players that have the following criteria: physique, speed, height, decision-making, and the will to win.

In addition to the news on the U-19, the PFF also explained the state of football to members of the online media who were present in the event. They highlighted the success of the sport in the country, but at the same time, illustrated what still needs to be done to make things better. Case in point are the following:

a. In the grassroots level, technical experts are needed in all 33 provincial football associations (FAs) under the umbrella of the PFF to ensure continuous football activities with the emphasis on combinations of training, mind-setting, practicing, and establishing competitions and festivals for the kids. Said experts need to have proper training from the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) as well as from FIFA.

b. According to PFF Secretary-General Atty. Rolando Tulay, there is a need for continued education to be sustained for our coaches, as quality coaches would lead to the development of quality players that would continue to bring pride and honor to our country. There could be up to seven potential new AFC A-licensed coaches in the Philippines in the past year. In addition, assessment, teaching and development of coaches is year-round and constant.

c. There is a need for the establishment and development of football competitions whether it comes from the club level via leagues like the UFL, to the different age-group competitions, both for girls and boys as well as for men and women. The different competitions serve as a means to find individuals who can play for flag and country, whether for the different youth teams or for the senior team.

d. As per PFF President Mr. Mariano "Nonong" V. Araneta, the continued development of the national youth team system is an important aspect of his program, with the element of domestic and international exposure for the teams in order for it to be developed. To fulfill that and other aspects of the program above, partnerships with those who believe in the sport is an important ingredient.

Mr. Carranza added to that notion, expressing that the growth of the sport is dependent on the progress at the grassroots level as well as the development of the youth teams, which he believes would ensure the momentum from the success of the senior national team goes further.

The event was graced by the presence of Mr. Carranza, Coach Caslib, PFF Marketing and Communications Department Head Ebong Joson, Atoy Sta. Cruz of the Motorcycle Philippines Federation and certain elements of the online social media.

Thanks to Juan Manila Express for this photo

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Tampa Bay signs Eric LeGrand

The NFL Draft is one of the highlights of the NFL offseason. 7 rounds spread over 3 days, with over 200+ players drafted. Yet there is this one story that should get you teary-eyed.

You see, Eric LeGrand was a talented member of the Rutgers defensive line. But then, tragedy struck as he was injured in an attempt to make a tackle during a kickoff return last October 2010. The injury left him paralyzed and since then, he is making the effort to resume walking. He did return to the field for Rutgers (albeit in a wheelchair), as seen from the picture above.

His head coach back then, Greg Schiano, was hired by Tampa Bay to be the man to lead them back to respectability. With the draft over and trying to fill up players for the 90-man training camp roster, he wanted to remake the team in his own image. Then he thought of Eric, who would have been a part of the just-concluded NFL Draft Class as a senior if not for his "situation." Signing him, according to Greg, would be a recognition of his character, spirit and perseverance. He also adds, that Eric is precisely what he is looking for with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

He broached the idea to Tampa GM Mark Dominik and Player Personnel Director Dennis Hickey, who sought, and got, permission from the Glazer family, who own the team to pursue the planned signing.

The photo below came from his press conference detailing his signing last June 5, as he made the effort to fly down to Tampa to visit the team. When the original announcement that Tampa signed him last May came out, he was still back in New Jersey, but the team sent the necessary details to him in NJ. This special contract Eric signed does not involve salary, but will definitely enable him to say that he is legitimately onto a NFL team roster.

The team also announced that special edition Eric LeGrand #52 jerseys will be made available for purchase. Proceeds from this jersey will go to LeGrand's foundation for spinal research and support.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

UAAP Season 75 Opening Schedule Set

Can't wait for the UAAP? The opening weekend for men's basketball has been released.

The upcoming season, which will be dubbed as "Unbreakable at 75" (obviously a play on the UAAP celebrating its diamond season of existence) will once again be shown live on Studio 23.

Newly-minted Fil-Oil Preseason Champions National University will be kicking things off against the University of the East on July 14 at 2 p.m, while the losing finalists for the past two seasons, Far Eastern University will be facing reigning overall champions University of Santo Tomas at 4 p.m.

The next day will feature the new-look De La Salle University, boosted by the arrival of coach Gee Abanilla and true freshman Jeron Teng, against the University of the Philippines at 2 p.m, followed by the reigning UAAP men's basketball champions, the Ateneo de Manila University facing off against the only team that beat them last season, the Adamson University Soaring Falcons at 4 p.m.

Both matches will be at brand-spanking-new MOA Arena.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Euro Round-About - Group D

Day Four of the 2012 European Football Championships, a.k.a Euro 2012. The final set of teams to see action, with teams trying to reclaim lost glory highlighting the constitution of the group.

England - The Three Lions have been hungry for success in the sport that they claim is their birthright. Although they have been successful in the road to the Ukraine, the drama has since ratcheted up. Fabio Capello resigns as manager after John Terry gets stripped of the captaincy. Wayne Rooney gets himself suspended for two matches. Players dropping off like flies due to injuries incurred, whether in training or in friendlies. Now, it's up to Roy Hodgson to get them ready. Stability is set on goal with Joe Hart. The 4-2-3-1 will need solid defensive tacticians on the field, and the English have one of the best left backs in Ashley Cole. They'll miss Gary Cahill's partnership with John Terry, but look for Joleon Lescott  to step up. The wings will be ok with James Milner and Ashley Young, as well as the Arsenal duo of Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, but there is concern given the fitness of captain Steven Gerrard and Scott Parker in central midfield, especially with Gareth Barry and Frank Lampard ruled out. Acting as placeholders for Rooney will be his teammate in Manchester United, Danny Welbeck, or Andy Carroll.

France - Les Bleus were an embarrassment under Raymond Domenech, so the change to Laurent Blanc was a welcome addition. Under his stewardship, they have suffered just one defeat. The lineup is led up front by Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema, who scored 28 goals for them last season, with up-and-coming Oliver Giroud as his contemporary. Attacking options in their midfield will be coming from the diminutive Franck Ribery, alongside the likes of Samir Nasri and Hatem Ben Arfa. Veteran Florent Malouda will buddy up with young Yann M'Vila in the middle as the French will try to dominate possession and give Karim and Franck plentiful of scoring opportunities. Giving assistance to the captain and goalkeeper Hugo Lloris will be a defense led by a couple of Manchester players, United's Patrice Evra and City's Gael Clichy.

Sweden - The disappointment not advancing in the 2010 World Cup ended long-time manager Lars Lagerback's reign with the squad. The new regime is led by Erik Hamren, whose 4-2-3-1 system has the added wrinkle of using captain and AC Milan star striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic in a support role behind a lead striker, which most likely will be Galatasaray's Johan Elmander. Making sure Zlatan and Johan get good scoring chances are the likes of Sebastian Larsson in midfield, Rasmus Elm and sage veteran Anders Svensson. Half of the Olsson twins of Blackburn Rovers made the trip to the Ukraine, and it is the defender Martin. He, along with Olof Mellberg, will make things easy for Andreas Isaksson on goal.

Ukraine - The co-hosts will be relying on the spirit and legacy of their forward captain, Andriy Shevchenko, best known for his scoring exploits in AC Milan and the disappointment that followed in Chelsea. He now plays for Dynamo Kyiv, which has nine players in the national side. The other big team in Ukrainian football is Shaktar Donetsk, which has six, and that includes their starting keeper Andriy Pyatov. All-in-all, only two players from the Euro side do not ply their trade in their domestic league, and those two are integral to what manager Oleg Blokhin wants to implement. One is Andriy Voronin, the former Liverpool forward now with Dynamo Moscow, who will be lined up alongside Shevchenko. The other is Bayern Munich midfielder Anatoliy Tymoshchuk, who will be integral in easing off the pressure against a relatively untested defense and a goal-keeper originally pegged as its fourth-string. They also have Andriy Yarmolenko, a winger who can shepherd the offense to the forwards or score on his own.

Who advances? - France wins the group, with Sweden stealing the runners-up spot.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Blog Outsourcing - June 11, 2012 edition

Greetings and welcome to the latest edition of The Morning After.

Shocked. Surprised. In awe. That happened after Michael Buffer announced the decision. Considering the statistics, conversations and observations all across the timelines, Timothy Bradley, Jr. remains undefeated.

When the winner himself says that he himself was not sure and wanted to watch tape, something is definitely amiss. This will definitely be worse if Manny Pacquiao had decided to not take the high road.

Let's see if Timothy will take the same path.

Here forth are the links after the jump.

The Euro Round-About - Group C

Welcome to Day 3 of the 2012 European Football Championships, or the Euro 2012 for short. Fans have enjoyed the past two days, and this group aims to provide that and some more for you.

Croatia -Slaven Bilic will be relying on the talent of a couple of players plying in the Premiership in Tottenham's Luka Modric and Everton's Nikica Jelavic in possibly sneaking in a run in the knockout stages. In addition, players like Ivan Rakitic, Niko Kranjcar, captain Dario Srna will anchor their counterattacking 4-4-2 scheme. A veteran back four led by Vedran Corluka, Josip Simunic and Danijel Pranjic will try to parry the opposing offenses.

Ireland -We best know the Irish for as being screwed by weird circumstances, best illustrated by the Thierry Henry handball in 2010. With Giovanni Trappatoni, conservative tactics will be the norm. Offensive production will be coming from captain Robbie Keane and Kevin Doyle. Shay Given is the sage veteran on goal, with veterans like John O'Shea and Richard Dunne at the back. Damien Duff and Stephen Hunt man the midfield. They do have the profile of how the Danes and the Greeks won their Euro competition, but they will be asking a lot out of a side whose some of its key players played for a team that finished last in the English Premier League.

Italy -The Azzuri have sputtered in their preparations for the Euros, losing their last three friendlies AND having to cancel an additional one due to an earthquake. Controversy has hounded the team, and it is not just because Mario Balotelli is in the roster. A match-fixing scandal has plagued the country and has already resulted in one player being removed from the lineup. Under Cesar Prandelli, they are to overwhelm their opponents via possession. The key to achieve that will be through Andrea Pirlo. The Bianconeri playmaker will have options alongside him in Daniele De Rossi and Claudio Marchisio, as well as Riccardo Montolivo. Up front, Prandelli could mix and match with the likes Balotelli, Antonio Cassano, Sebastian Giovinco, Antonio Di Natale and Fabio Borini. Preventing goals will be up to captain Gigi Buffon, with Giorgio Chiellini providing additional protection/ 

Spain - The reigning World and European champions are primed to defend their title. They virtually have their entire team intact. However, they lose two key cogs due to injury in Carles Puyol on defense and David Villa on offense. There might be concerns of fatigue and exhaustion, as half the team come from FC Barcelona and Real Madrid, perennial Champions League contenders and La Liga powerhouses, plus players who made extensive runs into European football this season (two from Chelsea and Athletic Bilbao, one from Atletico Madrid). However, balancing such fatigue is easy when you arguably have the deepest midfield in football, handy since that midfield is what runs the tiki-taka engine, led by Xavi and Andres Iniesta. The key will be the newcomers in defense, Valencia's Jordi Alba, Atletico Madrid's Juanfran and Athletic Bilbao's Javi Martinez fit in the scheme of things. And then, there is Fernando Torres, the enigmatic forward.

Who advances? - Spain wins group. Italy as the runners-up.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

The Euro-Round-About - Group B

The European Football Championships, or the Euros, are already underway. Tonight is the beginning of play for the Group B. The Group of Death to beat all Groups-of-Death. All teams are in the FIFA Top 10 rankings for June.

Denmark - Morten Olsen's Eleven suffered a huge blow with regular starting keeper Thomas Sorensen was ruled out for the tournament with a back injury. Kasper Schmeichel from Leicester City replaced him on the roster. The family name is familiar because he is the son of Peter Schmeichel, the Danish and Manchester United legend and backstopper of the miraculous 1992 side that won the Euros. Captained by Liverpool defender Daniel Agger, they'll have to muster some superb defending and tactical counterattacking considering their opponents in the group. Joining Agger at the back four will most likely be Simon Kjaer of AS Roma, AZ Alkmaar's Simon Poulsen and Kobenhavn's Lars Jacobsen. Up front, Nicklas Bendtner will be the key man, with Dennis Rommendahl and Christian Eriksen chipping in.

Germany - The Germans are the heavy favorites to take home the trophy, their first since Euro 96. Under Joachim Loew, Die Mannschaft have at least gone all way to the semifinals in all the tournaments it has participated under his tenure as manager. The core is filled with Bayern Munich players wanting to put behind the misery of losing in the Champions League final against Chelsea, from Manuel Neuer on goal, captain Philipp Lahm and Holger Badstuber at the back line, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Toni Kroos and Thomas Muller at the middle and Mario Gomez up front. Also key in the 4-2-3-1 set up will be the wizardry in the midfield of Real Madrid's Sami Khedira and Mesut Ozil and soon-to-be Gooner Lukas Podolski.

Netherlands - The Oranje will once again be under the stewardship of Bert van Marwijk, who guided them to the World Cup Final against eventual champions Spain. The team will be using a 4-2-3-1 set-up as well, with the sensational Robin van Persie up front. Arjen Robben also would like to make amends after the Champions League final, while providing beef and physicality in the middle will be captain Marc van Bommel and Nigel de Jong. Creativity will served from Wesley Sneijder, Rafael van der Vaart, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Dirk Kuyt. Maarten Stekelenburg of AS Roma is the starter from a deep keeper corps, as Michel Vorm and Tim Krul have been sensational in the Premiership for Swansea and Newcastle, respectively. The back line can be considered as Holland's weakness, but John Heitinga and Joris Mathijsen will make an effort to steady it.

Portugal - The Navigators' path to greatness has always been anchored to a legendary figure. Eusebio in the 1966 World Cup,  Luis Figo in the last decade. Now, it lies with Cristiano Ronaldo. The Real Madrid sensation is the captain and tasked to replicate the achievement. Under the stewardship of Paulo Bento, they will be using a defensive and counter 4-3-3. To help hold the back line are Cristiano's club teammates, Pepe and Fabio Coentrao. The midfield will have two key Premiership cogs, Raul Merieles on defense and Nani on offense.

Who advances? - Germany wins the group, the Dutch escape with the second spot.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

The Euro Round-About - Group A

The European Football Championships start in a few hours, and this group will be kicking things off. No heavyweights in Group A, but all are pretty much even.

Poland - The hosts will be looking at trying to win behind players who assisted in Borussia Dortmund's successful Bundesliga campaign, with Robert Lewandowski, Jakub Blaszczykowski and Lukasz Piszczek. They also have English side Arsenal's starting keeper Wojciech Szczesny. Under the stewardship of Franciszek Smuda, they play a counterattacking style similar to how Dortmund plays, which makes it easier for their stars to work. They aim to replicate a tradition that had been discontinued in the last event, which is for a host side to make it to as far as the semifinals.

Czech Republic - They have acquitted themselves well in this competition, making the finals in 1996 and the semifinals in 2004. With Michal Bilek in charge, look for them to go into a 4-2-3-1, with the creative magic from Tomas Rosicky of Arsenal trying to make things easy for former Liverpool striker (now with Galatasaray) Milan Baros and CSKA Moscow's Tomas Necid to score. At least at the back, they are in good hands with Petr Cech on goal. Helping out the Champions League winner from Chelsea on defense will be Bayer Leverkusen's Michal Kadlec. You may also wonder that they have someone of Ethiopian descent playing for the team in Theodor Gebre Selassie.

Russia - Under Dick Advocaat, the Russians have been making an effort to approach the greatness of their Soviet predecessors. They were almost there with in 2008, making it to the semifinals under changemaker expert Guus Hiddink before being dispatched by eventual champions Spain. Arsenal midfielder Andrei Arshavin, who rediscovered his form while on loan with Zenit St. Petersburg, is the captain. Joining him there are six of his teammates at Zenit, plus Advocaat being their former manager, helps with the familiarity. Also with a large contingent is CSKA Moscow, led by their keeper, Igor Akinfeev. In front of him are two of his teammates in Sergei Ignashevich and Aleksei Berezutskiy. In addition Anzhi Makhachkala's Yuri Zhirkov (best known as having played in Chelsea), also has CSKA roots.  Up front, they could go with either Roman Pavlyuchenko or Pavel Pogrebnyak as the lone striker, with Arshavin and CSKA youngster Alan Dzagoev behind him. Another hidden edge with Russia has to be their three-month break no thanks to the legendary Russian winters, which makes their players a little more fresher than most of their contemporaries.

Greece - The 2004 Euro winners won their title through sheer prevent defense and counterattack, bound to frustrate and irritate opponents, and possibly viewers as well. You might say, watching the Philippines play in the 2010 Suzuki Cup would make you better appreciate how the Greeks "pirated" their way to the trophy back then. Their manager back then, Otto Rehhagel, recently departed, but his successor Fernando Santos adopted his scheme and added some more wrinkles. They will be led a couple of players from that championship team, Giorgos Karagounis and Kostas Katsouranis of Panathinaikos. A couple of youngsters who could become stars in the competition are Schalke's Kyriakos Papadopoulos and Parma's Sotiris Ninis.

Who advances? Russia as group winner, Poland as runner-up

Monday, June 4, 2012

Blog Outsourcing - June 4, 2012

Good morning and Happy Monday!

It has been a long day, especially when you know you will be covering a FIFA international friendly tomorrow, especially when it featured back-to-back press conferences. (The other one involves Puma being the kit sponsor of the Philippine Senior National Football team, its first in the Asia-Pacific region)

I enjoy watching and covering football. I feel more pressure with it now, especially when you have committed yourself to writing more about it. At least you get the enjoyment of magic such like this at Jerryworld.

Here forth are the links to keep you busy after the jump.

Stephan Schröck to miss friendly vs INA

In an announcement on the official website of the national team, midfielder and Philippine international Stephan Schröck had to take an unscheduled trip back to Germany to attend to a family emergency and will miss the upcoming friendly against Indonesia on June 5.

No further details were provided as for the reasons for the sudden departure, but the team, led by Team Manager Dan Palami, has asked the public for prayers and support for Stephan, who will be joining TSG 1899 Hoffenheim next season. They are also dedicating the upcoming friendly to him.

Stephan had been looking forward to playing in front of the home fans, as reflected by his recent tweets below.