Originally published by Manila Times Online
The Philippines Football League (PFL) is set to start its 2022 season with the Copa Paulino Alcantara on March 14 at the Philippine Football Federation (PFF) National Training Center in Carmona, Cavite.
Defending Copa Paulino Alcantara champion Kaya Iloilo begins its title retention drive against Maharlika Manila in the opening game followed by the clash between United City FC and the Azkals Development Team.
PFF president Mariano 'Nonong' Araneta welcomed the return of the country's professional football league.
"Football fans have long been starved of a lengthy football season, and it is high time that we have a proper league season which will create rivalries and storylines among the participating clubs," said Araneta.
"The Copa Paulino Alcantara is also the perfect competition for the clubs to get their fitness back in time for the league."
A total of seven football clubs will battle it out in a single-round robin format totaling 21 matches. The top four teams in the elimination round will clash in the semi-finals. The losers of the semi-final matches will play for third place honors while the winners square off for the crown.
The Copa Paulino Alcantara will be staged under the open-environment setup with testing and closed-circuit protocols which was already approved by the Games and Amusements Board (GAB). Additionally, PFL will implement a stop and go scenario in the event that the Alert Level is raised in Carmona, Cavite.
The clubs have already begun their preparations with training sessions already ongoing subject to the approval of their health and safety protocols by their respective local government units.