• Ceres La Salle, Meralco battle for No. 2 seeding

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    Spanish striker Adrian Gallardo Valdes (9) of Ceres La Salle FC attempts to pierce the defense of Kaya FC in their match in the United Football League on Saturday. PHOTO BY UFL MEDIA

    Spanish striker Adrian Gallardo Valdes (9) of Ceres La Salle FC attempts to pierce the defense of Kaya FC in their match in the United Football League on Saturday. PHOTO BY UFL MEDIA

    Defending champion Ceres La Salle FC and Loyola Meralco Sparks FC will be disputing the No. 2 seeding in the United Football League (UFL) on Saturday at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium.

    The Ceres-Loyola game starts at 4 p.m.

    Leading team Global FC, with a sizeable lead on total points, earned the first seat in the continental meet.

    The Meralco Sparks, meanwhile, hold a slim two-point edge against their rivals with 34 points on 11 wins, a draw and two losses following their 3-2 win against JP Voltes FC on Sunday.

    On the other hand, Ceres has a record of 10 victories, two draws and three defeats for 32 points after their recent 0-1 loss against Kaya FC in their previous game.

    Loyola will rely on its top guns led by Azkals skipper Phil Younghusband.

    “They are a really good squad and we have to match them first. If we can match them, there’s a good chance that we will sneak something with the quality of players we have but if we are not prepared to match the effort and work rate then we’ll get caught,” said Loyola FC head coach Simon McMenemy.

    He added that they should not underestimate the capacity of the 2015 UFL winners though they lost in their last game against fellow top club Kaya FC.

    “It’s Ceres. It doesn’t matter if they loss or won their last game. The caliber and standard of their players dictates that you got to give them everything you got,” McMenemy said.

    During the match between the two squads in the first round of games on April 30, Loyola escaped with a 3-2 victory.

    Filipino-German star Stephan Schrock, who is on an extended loan to Ceres from German club SpVgg Greuther Furth, is expected to lead the Bacolod squad.

    The high-scoring Spanish duo of Bienvenido Maranon and Adrian Gallardo Valdes will also be on deck to fortify the Busmen.

    Meanwhile, Kaya FC and Laos FC are also slated to clash in the 1:30 p.m. game.

    Kaya is currently No. 5 spot with nine wins, a draw and five losses for 28 points while cellar-dwelling Laos FC is No. 10 with two wins, 12 defeats and a draw.

    Laos FC absorbed its 12th loss this season from former UFL second division foes Forza FC, 1-3, on Saturday.

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