The Ang Liga collegiate pre-season football tournament has introduced a new format for their 13th season slated to open this coming Sunday.
The tournament, which was founded in 2003 by Philippine Football Federation Technical Director Aris Caslib and Under-23 Azkals coach Marlon Maro, will now feature two divisions as it opens its games for another season.
Aimed to be a training ground collegiate teams and to bolster competitiveness before the NCAA and UAAP season starts, the longest running pre-season football tilt is set to banner a total of 19 squads from Metro Manila and selected provinces.
In the new format, 12 teams will be part of the first division while the second division will house seven teams.
Consequently, the 12 collegiate clubs in the first division will be divided into two groups for the opening round of eliminations.
Group A will include UAAP title-holders Far Eastern University, University of Santo Tomas, Lyceum of the Philippines University (LPU), Adamson University, Ateneo de Manila University and Emilio Aguinaldo College.
Also, NCAA champions San Beda College (SBC), National University (NU), University of Perpetual Help System Dalta, University of the East, University of the Philippines (UP) and College of Saint Benilde are all clustered in Group B.
Meanwhile, in the second division, the reserve teams of SBC, LPU, UP, and NU will be battling against the football teams of University of Makati (UMak), University of Batangas and Malayan Colleges Laguna (MCL).
The top four teams from the two groups in the first division will qualify for the knock-out quarterfinals while the top four from the division two will move on to the semifinals.
Elimination round games of the tournament are set to be played at the SBC Football Field, MCL Field and UMak Field while the final stages will be staged at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium.