Liga Futbol Incorporated (LFI), the Philippines Football League’s governing arm, has officially unveiled the logo of the Copa Paulino Alcantara signalling the formal buildup towards the actual cup competition which will serve as the highest level in the country’s football system.
The unveiling happened on July 27 at the Philippine Football Federation (PFF) headquarters in Pasig City, Metro Manila.
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The six clubs that make up the current Philippines Football League, Ceres-Negros, Davao Aguilas, Global Cebu, JPV Marikina, Kaya Iloilo, and Stallion Laguna are going to compete for the cup.
The winner of the competition will be qualified for next season’s AFC Cup.
LFI also held an open competition for fans and graphic designers in creating the tournament logo in which the winner was also announced in the event.
The design chosen was the work of Joel Alejo who hailed from Nueva Vizcaya and is currently based in Saudi Arabia as a graphic designer. He wins Php 50,000.00 (Approximately USD 940.00) for winning the contest.
A significant number of entries of about 200 from 150 designers were received by the LFI and each submission underwent a series of judging and eliminations.
Going back to the tournament setup, it is to note that the first edition will be vied by only six clubs for now, but LFI and Philippines Football League Chief Executive Officer Lazarus Xavier stated in an interview that the next edition of the cup competition will be open to other PFF-recognised football clubs that will meet the requirements for their eligibility to compete.
The statement is a positive one and something to look forward to for next year as it develops its reach into a more nationwide reach scope which is the main purpose of the cup competition.
During the closing statement of Mr. Xavier, he provided the reason as to why the cup is named after the Filipino footballing legend.
“When a team receives a trophy, it has to be iconic, that these players have achieved something highly noteworthy through hard work, skill and determination.”
“This is never more evident than naming the cup Paulino Alcantara who inspires and promotes these qualities,” added Mr. Xavier.
As for the format of the Paulino Alcantara Cup, the six competitors will be grouped into two of three teams each where the group phase will be a round robin format comprised of home and away legs. The top 2 teams from each group will proceed to the semifinals where the Group A winner will face the Group B runner-up and vice versa for a one legged knockout match hosted by the higher seeded team. The final will also be a one-off match.
The draw for the groupings will take place on the 26th of August.
Copa Paulino Alcantara formally begins on September 1.