Matchworn Phil Younghusband 03.12.2011 PHI 🇵🇭 : L.A. Galaxy 🇺🇸 1-6
What do Stephan Schröck, Patrick Reichelt, Harry Föll, Gerrit Holtmann, Raphael Obermair, John-Patrick Strauß and Mark Winhoffer all have in common, despite their German names? They are all (upcoming) Philippine national team players!
Apparently, there is an ongoing German invasion of the Philippines. Well, not in the military sense, but rather an invasion of the Philippine national team by German-born players.
While Stephan Schröck and Patrick Reichelt, are already veteran players of the national team, the rest of the aforementioned players have been recently called up for the team’s upcoming matches.
All of them are looking to contribute to the steady improvement of Philippine football, which culminated in the national team’s first appearance in the AFC Asian Cup in 2019.
Being one of the continents oldest national teams, the Philippines have steadily increased from one of the lowest ranked teams in in the mid-2000’s to their current 129th spot in the FIFA rankings. In order to qualify for the 2023 AFC Asia Cup, the country will have to face Palestine, Yemen and Mongolia - quite a feasible task, especially with half a squad of German players.
What a name! What a player! What a shirt!
Phil(ip) Younghusband: the Philippines' most capped player and all-time top goalscorer.
Having the ultimate first name for a Philippine player, his last name is where it’s at!
Getting married at the age of 32 (to Mary Youngwife?), he didn’t really remain faithful to his family name, yet, his footballing career exceeded any expectations:
Being born in England, Phil started his career playing for Chelsea London’s youth teams, before eventually going to the Philippines in order to become a national football legend. Before ending his professional career in 2019, Phil, alongside his older brother James, amassed a total of 108 caps for his country, while scoring 52 goals, getting him on the elite list of international players with 50 or more international goals.
Adding a shirt from such a local football legend to the collection always feels like an honor, especially if it was worn and, like in this case, signed.
According to my research, it must have been used in a friendly against David Beckham’s Los Angeles Galaxy, when “Beck’s” team trashed the “Azkals” (the national team’s nickname) 6-1.
Made by Japanese manufacturer Mizuno, the shirts comes in a nice dark blue with silver details, a Philippine flag on the sleeve and a clumsy looking federation badge. While the team used golden names and numbers for all of their previous matches, my shirt features matching silver numbers which were apparently only used in said friendly match.
I have to thank fellow collector Fabius for sending me this shirt in a swap. Be sure to check out his fantastic collection on Instagram!