Davao Aguilas end losing streak against Ceres-Negros with emphatic win

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Davao Aguilas saved the best for last as they end their losing streak against their bogey team, Ceres-Negros, with a comprehensive 3-0 win in their final PFL meeting for the season in Pana-ad Park and Stadium.

The match began with the hosts immediately settling into their trademark passing and possession-based style of play as Ceres carved the early chance that forced Patrick Deyto to successfully come up with a double save to avoid an early calamity.

Ceres continued this trend as they sustained their forays well into the Davao Aguilas’ territory but the visitors were able to hold firm in their defensive duties.

It wasn’t all Ceres though as the Mindanaoans were also able to come up with a few of their own skirmishes towards the 2018 PFL champions’ final third.

However, a curious twist in the proceedings happened against Ceres-Negros as Coach Risto Vidakovic got sent off for arguing with a referee that led to physical contact that prompted the immediate ejection of the Busmen’s mentor in just the game’s first quarter of an hour.

Twelve minutes after Coach Risto’s departure from having any involvement in the match,  the visitors were able to draw first blood as Davao Aguilas broke the deadlock through Phil Younghusband who scored off a surprisingly “Route-One” play via keeper Patrick Deyto’s punt in the 27th minute.

Phil Younghusband then doubled the lead in the 31st minute with a spectacular rocket that gave Toni Doblas no chance to interfere with the ball’s flight.

38′ Jason De Jong added a third for the Mindanao-based outfit side off a James Younghusband cutback as the newly crowned champions found themselves in a deep hole with still significant time left before the break.

The hosts eventually failed to find the net as half-time arrived and both teams headed into their respective dressing rooms with Coach Melchor Anzures’ men enjoying a comfortable lead.

In the second half Ceres Negros slowly but surely tried to get back into the game as Curt Dizon eventually came up with an attempt in the 63rd minute, but it was easily saved by Patrick Deyto.

But Davao continued to torment their hosts by almost scoring a fourth goal in the hour mark as James Younghusband was released by a well executed through ball only to see his shot to hit the side netting.

At this time, Ceres Negros tried to pull out all the stops to come up with an equaliser but all their efforts still came up to nothing.

Despite some promising chances for the the busmen as the second half wore on, they weren’t able come up with even just a consolation goal as Blake Powell’s desperate attempt from distance in the 82nd minute sailed high, which summed up The Busmen’s miserable night up front.

As the final whistle blew, the visitors’ commendable first half output proved to be enough as Davao Aguilas finally get their first win against Ceres-Negros in their final encounter of the season.

Aguilas break the Busmen’s curse

Davao Aguilas have failed to defeat Ceres-Negros in any of their previous clashes in the 2018 PFL season, so this result is of something of importance and a good boost for the squad’s next few matches as they aim to close the season with a very strong finish which they could bring towards the Copa Paulino Alcantara campaign.

A cause of concern for the hosts

Davao Aguilas definitely came into the match with extra-motivation to end their hosts run of dominance in their head-to-head clashes in the current season. But despite already being crowned champions, the way the offence has been blunt and unable to challenge their rivals for the night is something that the management should look into with a bit of worry, especially if Ceres-Negros want to have a respectable run in the upcoming Copa Alcantara.

Their performance for the day cannot be avoided to be compared to their previous game in Singapore in the AFC Cup where the squad has been devoid of their usually trademark cutting edge even though they had the lion’s share of possession as they succumbed to Home United in the ASEAN Zone Finals.

With this second straight setback within five days, it is time for the Bacolod-based club to regroup and focus on strengthening the second unit as the more experienced key players and starters begin to be rotated.


Ceres-Negros: Doblas, Aguinaldo, Kane, Christiaens, Barbaso, Steuble-C (De Murga 69′), Nazari (Munoz 75′), Mulders (Herrera 61′), Porteria, Dizon, Powell
Davao Aguilas: Deyto, Grommen, Dos Santos, Casambre, McDonald, Hartmann, Gadia (Villanueva 56′), De Jong, J. Younghusband, Salenga (Tull 58′), P. Younghusband-C

Photo credit: Ceres-Negros FC 

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