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PFF, NT members express gratitude to JYH over retirement

James Younghusband (#7, in white) during his time in FC Meralco Manila. Younghusband played for the club for five years before being dealt to Davao Aguilas in 2018

by Drew Malihan

MANILA - The Philippine Football Federation, and former and current Azkals cast thanked James Younghusband after the latter announced his retirement through social media.

In a press release by the federation, both PFF President Mariano Araneta and General Secretary Atty. Edwin Gastanes showed their gratitude towards the 33-year old striker.

“We thank James Younghusband for his valuable contributions to the growth of the sport in the country,” Araneta said.

Gastanes added, “May his influence on and off the pitch inspire all young players who aspire to play for the country.”

Former and current Azkals teammates and coaching staff also send their regards to the Filipino international, who represented the country since 2005 at the Southeast Asian Games in Manila.

Suphanburi striker Patrick Reichelt called Younghusband “one of Philippines greatest of all time,” saying that the latter was an inspiring and humble person.

Scottish manager Simon McMenemy, who coached the Azkals during the so-called “Miracle of Hanoi,” also send his congratulatory message to James, telling his former player “humble and grounded.”

“Congrats on a history changing career and scorer of the most underrated yet most important goal in Azkals history,” said McMenemy, pointing a stoppage time goal over Laos in the 2010 AFF Suzuki Cup qualification that give the Azkals a spot at the final tournament.

Other former and current members of the national team such as Neil Etheridge, Stephan Schrock, Daisuke Sato, and Anton del Rosario also thanked Younghusband, calling the striker “a legend.”

James played his last club match with Ceres-Negros FC, helping the busmen lift the PFL and Copa Paulino Alcantara trophies, while he has his last international cap for the Philippines against Kyrgyzstan in the 2019 AFC Asian Cup.

Follow him on Twitter: @drewmalihan