PFL eyes Copa Paulino Alcantara in April

Originally published by Panay News

MANILA – Following its successful 2020 Philippines Football League bubble tournament late last year, the league is planning to resume its tournament with Copa Paulino Alcantara (CPA) this April.

The announcement was made during the PFL 2021 virtual season kick-off on Saturday afternoon, which was attended by five of the six football clubs.

The tournament resumption will be subject to health and safety protocols imposed by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID).

The staging of the Copa Paulino Alcantara prior to the start of the league will allow clubs to ease into the competition with several international tournaments also lined up for the year in Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Champions League, AFC Cup and the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers.

“The earlier we can start (with competitive football), the better,” said United City Football Club CEO Eric Gottschalk. “The league resumption will allow the players gradually get into fitness.”

“We’re all one here in wanting to play sooner rather than later,” said Kaya general manager Paul Tolentino. “The right setup must be agreed by all the stakeholders and having the Cup will allow us more preparation and active competition.”

The PFL was forced to cancel the CPA last year due to the coronavirus situation in the country. Ceres-Negros FC, now United City Football Club, was the last Copa Paulino Alcantara champion in 2019.

The PFL is also eyeing to kick off the 2021 PFL sometime after the June window of the FIFA competition./PN

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