Since the start of the Azkals’ resurgence, the only measure of success by us fans (and the world) is the Coca-Cola FIFA World Rankings. Here are some reasons why us Filipinos should disregard these rankings.
A flawed ranking system
Simply put, the real objective of the current FIFA world ranking is to put the recent FIFA World Cup winner on top at “all cost”. That’s why the weighted annual point system is used to fulfill that objective.
Because of this, we are number two in South East Asia which is obviously misleading as we have not beaten Indonesia, Malaysia, and Thailand in recent memory.
So how do we measure our current success?
I believe that focusing on regional success is the best way of measuring the gains of our senior team. Beating our previously unbeaten ASEAN neighbors is the only metric of success for me.
Growing up, stories of our neighbors beating us in the last two decades still haunt me and I truly hope that we could also return the favor (in my lifetime).
One more thing . .
If there was really something that we in Philippine Football should care about, it’s the Grassroots. The only true measure if our footballing success, as a country, is when we produce quality teams at all age levels.
To be honest, In the youth level we are: 20 years behind strong ASEAN teams, 50 years behind against AFC superpowers , and 100 years behind the world’s best.
The growing shift to club football, from a school-based one, is helping us a lot given that our national youth program is still in the works.
Thanks to the Football Alliance and the UFL, the kids have more chances to learn and improve their level of play. Supporting our grassroots programs, in all forms, will bring us success regionally and in the long run, globally.
Our fixation to the world rankings will not help our cause and will only divert us from what really matters.
So . . . Do we still care about the FIFA World Rankings?