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Davao City, Philippines

Baste: Football is ideal for Filipinos

October 23, 2019 - Wednesday 2:10 PM by Romeo Braceros

Article Banner Image Participating players of the first Mindanao Cup pose for a photo with Ricardo Yanson Jr., Vice Mayor Baste Duterte, and officials of DRFA. Contributed photo

Davao City vice mayor Sebastian ‘Baste’ Duterte believes playing football is ideal for Filipinos since it allows smaller players to excel.

As the main speaker at the welcome dinner for the 15 participating teams in the first Mindanao Cup at the Davao City National High School covered court on Tuesday, Duterte said football does not put Filipinos, who are characteristically smaller than westerners, at a disadvantage. 

"Messi is not that tall but he is one of the top football stars today," Duterte said in his speech.

He added that however, in order to succeed in football, an athlete needs to put hard work and dedication into the sport. 

"I hope all the participants stay healthy and enjoy the tournament," Duterte said.

Aside from the 15 participating teams all over Mindanao, also present during the welcome dinner are Negros Oriental Football Association (NOFA) president Ricardo Yanson Jr., Davao Regional Football Association (DRFA) officials, and family members of the players.

The Mindanao Cup officially started today (October 23) and will run until October 25 at the Tionko Football Field. 

The prestigious football tournament is jointly organized by NOFA and DRFA.

The nine-a-side tournament is Mindanao's version of the NOFA Cup, a grassroots football program that has continued since its inception in 2015.

Aside from DRFA, also competing in the football tournament are Bukidnon FA, Butuan-Agusan del Norte FA, Iligan-Lanao del Norte-Lanao del Sur FA, Maguindanao-Cotabato City FA, Mount Apo RFA, Sultan Kudarat FA, Surigao del Norte FA, Dinagat Islands RFA, and Zamboanga del Norte-Dipolog FA.

Also competing are Cagayan de Oro FA, Agusan del Sur and Surigao del Sur, the Golden Davao RFA, South Cotabato-Sarangani-General Santos RFA, Zamboanga Basilan Sulu Tawi-Tawi RFA, and Zamboanga del Sur-Pagadian RFA.

NOFA president Ricardo Yanson Jr. said they decided to organize Mindanao Football Cup to discover young football talents that they can develop into future national players.

The NOFA Cup was also Yanson’s initiative to discover young and talented footballers from all over the country. Top players were then selected to form the NOFA team to represent the country in China.