JPV Marikina reach Copa semis after win over Global Cebu

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JPV Marikina proved triumphant over Global Cebu in their second Copa Alcantara group stage face-off as they join Kaya Iloilo towards the knockout stage on Wednesday at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium.

The first chance of the match went Global’s way as Roberts tried to shoot with a header but the ball flew wide of the target.

Several moments later Uesato raised the Global Cebu’s alarms as he brought the ball in the danger area but the Japanese forward was denied with a timely intervention to put the ball out for a corner kick.

Just as the half hour mark was about to arrive JPV once again were presented with a very promising opportunity to put themselves a goal up as Kennedy Uzoka received a great ball in the box but he wasn’t able to unleash in time as Nikolic slid down to snuff out the danger.

What transpired next was a series of exciting exchanges as Global goalkeeper Michael Casas was forced to come up with a double save. But the danger was still ever present when the ball found Tsubasa Suzuki who dove for a header, but the attempt went narrowly wide of the near post.

The breakthrough goal finally arrived in the 39th minute as Uzoka made no mistake after receiving a gift of a ball off some slick counterattacking play between Moriyasu and Uesato before finding the towering forward who was able to break the ice.

Global had a chance to equalise in the 45th minute off a free-kick but Milan Nikolic’s header off a whipped in ball from Beaton was easy enough for Nelson Gasic to collect as halftime arrived with JPV enjoying a slim advantage.

In the second half the level of excitement continued to be sustained as both squads continued to push for goals as Global chased for an equaliser while JPV pushed for a two-goal cushion.

Despite some chances coming from both sides in the early stages of the second half, no goals arrived.

The second goal of the match was eventually scored in favour of JPV Marikina as Keigo Moriyasu got on the scoresheet with a powerful low shot off a feed from Takumi Uesato in the 63rd minute.

With the two-goal cushion enjoyed by JPV, Global refused to give up as they continued to push to reduce the deficit.

Global Cebu’s predicament was made complicated though when Paolo Pavone was sent off i the 74th minute leaving his side down to ten men.

But Stevic-Rankovic’s wards eventually got to reduce the deficit when Jordan Jarvis was able to tap-in a Charlie Beaton assist.

Despite the Cebu side being short by one man, they continued to toil and make it a nervous finish for JPV as they maintained their push to still make the game very much a contest.

But in the end, JPV’s efforts proved to be enough as the Marikina squad gets through to the knockout stage.

Photo credit: Philippines Football League