PETALING JAYA: Malaysia have not had much luck against the Philippines in the last four years.
Malaysia have drawn their last three friendlies against the Azkals – drawing 1-1 and 0-0 at home and away in 2012.
When the teams met in another friendly on March 1 at the Selayang Stadium, they again drew 0-0.
So, when the two teams meet in their fourth international in four years at the Cebu City Sports Complex on Sunday night, interim coach Datuk Ong Kim Swee hopes that his Harimau Malaya side will be able to end their winless run against the Philippines.
Malaysia actually have a good overall record against the Philippines, having won 11, drawn four and lost just once.
But Kim Swee does not believe in past results. Anyway, he believes that the Philippines are no longer the whipping boys of the region now that they’ve started calling up their overseas-based players.
The Philippines have called up midfielders Martin Steuble from Swiss side FC Wil 1900 and Jerry Lucena of Danish club Esbjerg fB for tonight’s match.
“It will be hard but not impossible for us to end our winless run against them. We have to stick to our game plan and be on our toes throughout the match,” said Kim Swee.
This match will be crucial for the Philippines as they are using it to prepare for the 2014 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Challenge Cup in Maldives next month. The tournament offers a ticket to the AFC Asian Cup next year.