Neil Etheridge, Phil and James Younghusband and the whole Philippine Azkals team earned instant celebrity status when they defeated defending champion Vietnam, clinching a slot in the semi-finals of the AFF Suzuki Cup 2010.
But their magical run ended when they lost to Indonesia twice in the semifinal round. “We’ve always wanted to do this, not for us to become instant celebrities, but we want to publicize football in the Philippines” Etheridge said. The team hopes that football can become a big sport in the Philippines where basketball and boxing are the popular sports. “This should be an eye-opener for the government to give us good facilities and promote sports to the youth.” James Younghusband added.