Archive for the ‘Sports’ Category

And it ain’t one of the Younghusband Brothers!

Warning: if you have no idea about professional football or video game football, this is gonna be a difficult read.

I’ve been playing Pro Evolution Soccer 12 (which will henceforth be abbreviated to PES because spelling it out every time is too much of a mouthful)…anyway. I’ve been playing PES 12’s Master League mode which allows you to build a team up, much like most franchise modes in sports games. After my first full season of using the crummy default team, I got a chance to nab several bigger named players like Chicharito and  Luis Suarez (both of whom have made it an absolute joy to play offensive football), but still lacked a back up keeper. So I began my search on national teams and found that the Philippines had some representation!

AND TO MY LUCK IT WAS OUR VERY HANDSOME GK, NEIL ETHRIDGE.

I’ve played with him as my back up for about 2 seasons now and with his progress and in-game evolution, I have to say he’s proven to be quite useful. In the game, he’s pretty good at stopping just about any shot and is particularly good with ball clearance, something that the developers got right based on his performance today! (And if you haven’t seen him in action irl, i do suggest you watch his game tape…it is pretty nice.)

It is a good thing to see that more real life Filipinos are seeing action in games. Manny Pacquiao of course is in EA’s Fight Night series as one of the most (justifiably) imba characters. However neither of the two have the honor of being the first Filipino in a video game, the honor of which belongs to Jose Rizal who was an unlockable player in the original 1999 release of Medal of Honor! There are a few guys with Filipino roots who play in the NFL and are subsequently featured in more recent editions of EA’s Madden franchise, but they aren’t as cool as these guys…so I shall not feature them. (*insert evil laugh*)

But don’t expect to see our entire Azkal team featured in football games in the near future. Though they are becoming a big deal locally, we’re still small fry compared to other Asian teams with better players and bigger rosters, not to mention players playing in the big leagues. Ethridge is one of the exceptions, seeing that he is on the reserve squad for Fullham, an English Premier League team that isn’t that great. The rest of our squad is composed of guys who don’t necessarily play for the best teams in the world, but are world class.

And it really gives you an idea of how far behind we are compared to the rest of the world in terms of creating world class talent. We have many players who could be bench warmers on decent teams in Europe or starters on B league teams, but we still don’t have anyone that would put fear into the hearts of our Asian counter parts. In gaming however, none of our local players are exactly imba enough on any level to even be featured in a game…which is sad considering that the team we just destroyed in the last round (Sri Lanka) has 4 players featured in the game…and they looked pretty sad sackish.

Given this revelation, how soon do you think it’ll be til we have our Azkals featured in better numbers in games like PES or FIFA 11? Your thoughts in the comments!