FEU succumbs to pressure, takes first loss vs DLSU

FEU Advocate
February 23, 2024 03:45

Far Eastern University (FEU) Booters struggled to execute against the De La Salle University (DLSU) Green Booters, starting off with a 1-3 defeat, in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) Season 86 men’s football tournament held yesterday, February 22, at the University of the Philippines (UP) Diliman Football Field in Quezon City.

Right after kickoff, the defensive struggle was noticeable for FEU, giving up a quick goal for DLSU's Luis Henares at the two-minute mark of the game.

The recovery did come fast for the green-and-gold squad as their defenders became more active.

At the 22-minute mark, it was FEU forward Nickos Mamon that led the conversion from their improved defense as he equalized the game with a diagonal shot.

However, defensive woes came back to haunt the Tamaraw booters in the latter part of the first half, resulting in a brace by Green Booter Isaac Anoh with consecutive goals at the 44-minute mark and three-minute extension after the first half respectively.

In a post-game interview with FEU Advocate, newly-promoted men's football head coach Alberto Besa explained their outlook as they were entering the second half.

"We talked about the problems that we saw in the first half and we put in fresh legs that were aggressive in the second half, and as you can see, we were able to create opportunities to score but it is unlucky because we just didn't get to convert them," he said.

In most of the second half, the green-and-gold booters did raise their play up a notch, keeping the ball near their goal and getting multiple chances to strike.

Unfortunately, FEU struggled to connect passes, making them unable to capitalize on their possessions.

DLSU's unyielding defense also proved too difficult for the Morayta-based squad to overcome which resulted in a scoreless second half.

Additional frustrations haunted the Tamaraw Booters when Mamon and Sherwin Basindanan got one yellow card each at the 28-minute and 31-minute marks respectively.

Anthony Baylon also received one at the same time as Green Booter Stephen Del Rosario at the 55th minute after a scramble.

Looking forward to their next games, Coach Besa also mentioned how they plan to improve their play.

"In the upcoming games, they're also against tough opponents and I think a lot had to do with it being our first game. Coming forward, we will review the games, see what we did wrong and correct them, become more mentally strong and set aside the nervousness," he added.

The Besa-led booters aim to bounce back as they will face the University of the Philippines on Sunday, February 25, at the same venue. 

-Vince Matthew Jaramilla

(Photo courtesy of Daniel Jacob/FEU Athletics Office)