April 25, 2024

‘Best of us’: Final 23 for Filipinas’ historic FIFA Women’s World Cup debut named

‘Best of us’: Final 23 for Filipinas’ historic FIFA Women’s World Cup debut named

Captain Tahnai Annis and co-captain Hali Long will return as leaders of the Philippine women’s national football team in the FIFA Women’s World Cup, the world’s grandest stage for women’s football that is happening later this month.

Coach Alen Stajcic has made the decision after the team wrapped up their four-week camp in Sydney, Australia.

“We congratulate the 23 players who were selected for the Philippines in the FIFA Women’s World Cup and express our gratitude to the players who have committed and sacrificed to make themselves available throughout the selection process,” said PFF president Mariano “Nonong” Araneta in a statement.

Joining Long among the defenders are Alicia Barker, Angela Beard, Reina Bonta, Malea Cesar, Jessika Cowart, Sofia Harrison, and Dominique Randle.

Annis will lead the midfielders. She will share the duties with Ryley Bugay, Anicka Castañeda, Sara Eggesvik, Quinley Quezada, and Jaclyn Sawicki.

The forwards on the team are Sarina Bolden, Isabella Flanigan, Carleigh Frilles, Katrina Guillou, Chandler McDaniel, and Meryll Serrano.

Meanwhile, the three goalkeepers are Kiara Fontanilla, Kaiya Jota, and Olivia McDaniel.

Rounding out the lineup as reserves are Inna Palacios, Maya Alcantara, and Isabella Pasion.

“This group of 23 represents the best of us, the best of the indomitable Filipino spirit, and I am excited to see them make all of us even prouder,” said team manager Jefferson Cheng.

The FIFA Women’s World Cup is hosted by Australia and New Zealand, with the Philippine team playing their group games in the latter country.

The national team, slotted in Group A, will start their World Cup campaign against Switzerland on July 21 in Dunedin, New Zealand.

They will next face the home team on July 25 in Wellington, before ending their Group A campaign against Norway on July 30 in Auckland.