DEFENDING champion Ateneo seeks to extend its winning run to four matches as it plays National University as second round action of the UAAP Season 80 men’s football tournament kicks off today at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.
The Blue Eagles are wary on what the Bulldogs can pull off in the featured 4 p.m. match.
In other matches, University of the East plays Far Eastern University at 2 p.m., while De La Salle and Adamson University collide at 8 a.m.
With 15 points, Ateneo is two off league-leading University of the Philippines, and despite all the struggles, the Katipunan-based side was able to wound up in second place at the end of first round.
The last two matches have something to be desire of for the Eagles, as they took 61 minutes to score the opening goal in a 2-0 victory over the winless Falcons and needed a late winner by Ryan Haosen to beat the Tamaraws, 4-3.
Tallying two straight clean sheets, NU is definitely in the Final Four conversation.
The Bulldogs, who are level with the Red Warriors at 10 points in fourth spot, defeated the Tamaraws (2-0) and the Green Archers (1-0).
Reigning MVP Jarvey Gayoso, the first round leading goalscorer with seven, and Haosen, who had three goals to boot this season, will banner Ateneo’s attack.
UE has been impressive in the past two matches, having toppled University of Santo Tomas, which took the top of the table at one point in the first round, and bested Adamson University.
Languishing in seventh place with five points, FEU needs a strong second round effort if it wants to make it to the Final Four.