Iloilo town opens football season with friendly match

BAROTAC Nuevo opened its grassroots football season over the weekend with a friendly match between two selected barangay teams and the participation of a German player from Aschaffenburg, Bavaria, Germany.

Barotac Nuevo Football Club United Inc. president Melvin Juarez said the interschool football tournament 2016 is participated by a total of 16 teams.

The teams were divided into six for Under 12 in the elementary schools, four for Under 16 in the secondary schools, and six for futsal girls.

The opening friendly match between Barangay Tabuc Suba and Barangay Tubungan show selected spikers with some having experience in the national league tournaments.

Visiting German spiker Tuncer Oezbahar, a professional member of the Vatanspor Football Club in Bavaria, Germany, lauded the local boys for their stamina and skills, and gave some tips in international tournaments.

Oezbahar, a first-timer in the Philippines, admitted hearing so much about the Barotac Nuevo spikers and their participation in international football events.

The German player also wanted to come back and bring in some of his German friends to try the Barotac Nuevo spikers and their brand of playing football.

Oezbahar said the football training program in his country started for three-year-old kids and football passion grows.

Oezbahar saw Barotac kids playing and said football passion is very hot in the municipality.

Barotac Nuevo is considered the cradle of football in the country with many international spikers produced from the town's football field inside the plaza.

Among the best known national players from Barotac Nuevo were the late Paulino Alcantara; the Araneta brothers, namely, Pablito, Mariano Jr. and Antonio, who were former players of international teams; Elmer Bedia dubbed as "Mr. Football" of the Philippines; and Ian Araneta and Emelio "Chieffy" Caligdong of the Azkals football team. (LCP/Sunnex)