Friday, September 27, 2013

2013 UFL Cup 2013 Groupings and Quick Thoughts

With Nomads will not take part in the 2013 UFL Cup, twenty-seven teams were divided into five groups.

Group A, C, and E will have five (5) teams in their group. Thus, top three (3) teams will advance to the next round.

Group B, D, and F will have four (4) teams in their group. Thus top two (2) teams will advance to the next round.

The best third place finisher in this four team group will also advance to the next round to complete the round of 16.

2013 UFL Cup Groupings:

Group A
Green Archers United
Manila Jeepney
Cebu Queen City

GAU will be heavy favourites to top the group; anything less will be a disappointment.

This is the most open group of them all. On paper, Forza and Cimarron will have the advantage in that they have played more games together in Division 2.

The question is -- what can we expect from Manila Jeepney and Cebu Queen City?

Group B
Air Force
General Trias

Old rivals meet again. Loyola, with a newly beefed up defence will expect first place and rightly so.

Can PAF arrest its decline and restore old glory, at least by making it to the knockout stages? Agila can take advantage of any PAF slip up.

Can Gen. Trias, bereft of its original Korean core, make waves once again in the competition that catapulted them to national prominence?

Group C
Manila Tala

The proverbial "Group of Death" is watered down by the fact that three teams will go through from this group.

First Division teams Global and PSG look strong. Can Ceres recapture the form it showed in winning the PFF Smart Club Championships early this year?

What to make of Navy and the relatively unknown Manila Tala?

Group D
Blue Guards

Stallion and Army meet yet again in the group stages of the UFL Cup.

Army memorably beat Stallion last year. Will lightning strike twice against a Stallion team missing key components from its title winning run?

Group E
Pachanga Diliman
Team Socceroo
Bright Star

Team Socceroo will get a chance to prove its credentials before it embarks on Division 1 football next year.

Pachanga Diliman will be favoured to top the group, but who to take the third spot?

Another open group with three slots up for grabs, this should be a very interesting group to say the least.

Group F
Manila All Japan
Manila Hurricanes

Kaya, looking to end its title drought, is given a very easy group on paper.
They should have no trouble going through to the next round.

Second division sides Union and Manila All Japan should contest second place in the group. Can Manhur spring a surprise?

·        Loyola is paired with sister team Agila. Ditto for Green Archers United with sister team Forza. Perhaps the UFL could look into the possibility of sister teams avoiding each other in the draw next time?
·        IMHO, this “three teams progressing from a five team group + the best third placer in four team group” may cause confusion among newbie football fans. Granted it will be a good talking point and a point for discussion, but new fans may look at it and be confused – and may dampen their interest.

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