The deadlock between Kaya Makati and Global Cebu in the Philippines Football League remains, even after 90 minutes of intense action at the Cebu City Sports Complex on Saturday night. Jordan Mintah put the ball in the back of the net in each half, but both efforts were ruled offside. In the end, despite plenty of excitement, the match ended in a scoreless draw.
“Well first of all, it was a really entertaining game — very exciting, the adrenaline was always high. We played quality football from the start, up to the finish. I think the way Kaya FC performed, we deserved the three points. I really want to watch the replay to see if the disallowed goals were offside,” said Makati head coach Noel Marcaida. “It was really a collective effort from my players. They played really well.”
Although Kaya dictated much of the game, it was Global’s Rufo Sanchez that had the first chance of the match. The Spanish forward, who was deployed on the flank, fired a strong effort from the edge of the box that was well tipped over by Ref Cuaresma. Makati responded five minutes later. Jovin Bedic sent Jordan Mintah clean through with a fantastic ball. The Ghanaian forward calmly beat the onrushing keeper, but midway through his celebration, the assistant referee flagged him for offside.
After failing to convert possession control into any goals, Makati turned up the intensity after the break. Within two minutes, Robert Lopez Mendy came close. Marwin Angeles spread the ball wide to Bedic, who put in a dangerous cross that was fired just wide. Jovin then had a penalty shout waved away five minutes later, when he went down trying to cut in between two Cebu defenders. But it was a decision halfway through the second period that really had the visitors up in arms.
From a deep free kick, Mintah turned the ball in at the back post. But yet again, much to his dismay, he was met with an offside flag. Kaya then had one last opportunity in the 90th minute. Lopez Mendy was picked out by a pinpoint Adam Reed cross, but the striker could only head the ball wide.
“I think Kaya came here to be very compact. They defended in their half and they were looking for the counter because of the two strikers (Mintah and Lopez Mendy) that they have. But we took note of that even before the game,” Cebu head coach Akbar Nawas said. “I think they had been scoring in every game, so for us to shut them out, I think it’s a plus point.”
The scoreless draw meant Kaya and Global remained tied on points (29) in the PFL, with Makati ahead on goal difference. The match was only the second of the season that Kaya failed to score. Meanwhile, Ref Cuaresma, who was named Man of the Match, claimed his second clean sheet of the campaign.
“The atmosphere was good. The crowd was amazing. If Dumaguete, where I come from, is my mom, Cebu is my dad because, I was disciplined here,” said the goalkeeper after the game. “Some of my family were here. You can’t make mistakes. Everyone is expecting so much. We didn’t want to disappoint the people who came to watch us play because, almost all the people here (at CCSC) were supporting Global.”