Queen City eyes UFL second division

(This my story for Sun.Star Cebu on Oct. 31)
AFTER a hectic six weeks preparing for the UFL Cup, the players and coaching staff of the Cebu Queen City United will take a break before taking to the pitch anew for its next challenge—the the United Football League Division 2.

“We are planning to hold another tryout soon so we can get more players but for now, we will be resting,” said head coach Mario Ceniza, who also handles Paref Springdale.

Unlike its shortened preparation for the UFL Cup—which only lasted a month—Cebu Queen City United will have a longer preparation for the league, which is expected to start in January.

Ceniza is also hoping the team gets to play a lot of friendly games with tough non-Cebu based teams so the squad will get to adjust to the style of play in the UFL, where top teams are quick to pounce on defensive errors to score a goal.

“I think it’s better that before coming up with the final lineup, we can have a lot of friendlies so we can really see how the players perform,” said Ceniza.

The players need not be college students, though Ceniza said college varsities have the advantage because they are already fit.

“As long as the players meet our requirements. They don’t have to be in college, because as of now, I can’t really speak for what the club can offer for them,” he said.

Ceniza also said the rigid training of the team, and their day jobs, took its toll on the players.

The team, which practiced every morning and every night for the UFL Cup, was formed less than two months ago and some of the players are not based in Cebu City, like goalkeeper Alex Boanghog, a policeman assigned in Carcar, and Carmen-based Jack Reston, Martin Bontia and Ronald Mahilum.

“I am impressed with Alex because even if he has a hectic schedule, he really tries to join our practices,” said Ceniza.

As for Reston, Bontia and Mahilum, Ceniza said that during their night-time practices, which end at 8:30 p.m., the three sometimes arrive home in Carmen at 1 a.m.

Ceniza also said that he had to pull out Junard Aguilar in last Saturday’s match because the striker was already getting very tired.

The coach said Aguilar arrived at past midnight  before the Saturday match because his 5 p.m. flight was delayed by five hours.
Aguilar couldn’t leave with the team—which flew to Manila at Friday dawn—because of his job in a bank. 

Pag gawas, higda dayun,” Ceniza said. “He already showed signs of dehydration. He played really well during the first two games. It was only in the last game that he was off.”

Cebu Queen City United lost all its matches in Group C, which was considered the group of death in the UFL Cup. Cebu was grouped with defending champion Global FC, which finished third, the Stallions and Pachanga FC.

Global, Pachanga and the Stallions also made the semifinal round of the PFF Smart Club Championships last summer.


Anonymous said…
ur right!more tune up games in neighboring islands just like bacolod and iloilo and ull see how ur players improve!hopefully next year they will be lined up with teams based in manila.it will be a wonderfull match!the football game here in cebu is really DIFFERENT from those places ive mentioned...nids more attacking power,stamina and some techniques.....changing the game rules here will put cebu on TOP someday...

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