|GAU is finally in the PFL. KC Cruz/UFL (file photo)|
By Ivan Saldajeno
PASIG—One of the clubs that expressed concern on how the Philippines Football League will run after it took over from the United Football League in 2017 was Green Archers United.
The club, which was mainly composed of La Salle alumni during its early days, made its stand known early last year, just as Meralco Manila shockingly disbanded, eventually opting not to join the second season.
[Related Story: GAU laments Meralco Manila's folding, calls PFF to review PFL admission requirements]
But when a new league that showed a lot of promise, the Philippine Premier League, stepped in, GAU quickly made its intent on joining it for the 2019 season.
[Related Story: 7 clubs join new PPL]
However, the PPL quickly folded after just one playdate, which curiously had GAU in it.
[Related Story: PPL no more as PFF cuts ties with league operator]
With the top tier play returning to the PFL format, many questions were raised on whether GAU, will still participate.
But on Friday, GAU formally booked its participation in the PFL by sending Assistant Coach Joel Villarino and star Jimuel Ariola in the preseason press conference at the Philippine Football Federation headquarters here.
On why the club finally said yes, Villarino said, "Less na ang gastos sa ngayon."
While the home-and-away format remains a concern in terms of logistics and expenditures, Villarino further said that the PFF giving the clubs freedom to have as many sponsors as they can prompted the Globe-backed squad to finally join.
"Ngayon, medyo maluwag siya kasi binigyan kami ng leeway," he added.
Villarino later bared that the club is looking at the new Aboitiz Pitch in Lipa as its home with the PFF National Training Centre in Carmona and even the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila, just at the back of La Salle as other options, although he clarified that nothing has been cast in stone yet.
The reigning WFL Elite champion will make its PFL debut on Saturday night at the Rizal Memorial Stadium, curiously against the same squad the club faced in its one-and-done stint in the PPL, Kaya Iloilo.
In the said match, Kaya Iloilo blew by GAU, 3-0.
[Related Story: Kaya-Iloilo on top of PPL table after opening night win vs GAU]
But because of the PPL folding, the match was nullified, and they have to meet again at 4 p.m., the first game of a doubleheader at the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila.
Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno