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PFL still building its legs, says commissioner

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ENTERING its fourth season, the Philippines Football League (PFL) is still building legs and continues to learn with the end view of presenting a product that all stakeholders would appreciate and be proud of, its commissioner said.

Speaking at an online media briefing last Wednesday, PFL Commissioner Coco Torre shared that the league is still in the process of learning, which is marked by hits and misses, he said, but something that only pushes them to strive to do better and succeed.

“The PFL is in its fourth year. Through the years there have been observations on what has worked and what hasn’t. The dynamics are always shifting and we are putting the best strategy for us moving forward,” said Mr. Torre.

Because of the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the start of season four of the PFL has been put on hold. The league though has been given traction in its return push with the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases giving its nod for PFL teams to resume conducting practices and conditioning although under strict health and safety protocols.

Despite the current setup, Mr. Torre said the league has been continuously working and finding ways to bring the PFL, and the sport of football in general, to more people and be appreciated better.

Among the strategies they are working on relate to the league’s stability by way of expansion and parity, and marketing.

“One key strategy is the expansion of the league where you have a more competitive and exciting league. And more clubs mean the stability of the league,” Mr. Torre said,

Adding, “Another strategy, in relation to stability, is how clubs can be at par in the competition, so certain regulations have to be put in place.”

Currently, the PFL has six teams competing with another club in the process of joining the league.

Ceres-Negros FC is still technically part of the league despite confirming reports that it is talks with investors who will be taking over the management and ownership of the club in the PFL.

And then there is marketing, which Mr. Torre said is very important for the sustainability of the league.

“And the last ingredient is marketing the league. As you all know football is not as popular in the Philippines and we have to raise the awareness, build more equity and entice more sponsors to come in and build on that,” he said.

For the fourth season of the PFL it is welcoming a major sponsor in Qatar Airways, which, Mr. Torre said, remains committed to the league despite the effects of COVID-19.

Mr. Torre said there is no definite time frame on when the PFL season would start but they are continuously monitoring the situation with COVID-19 and would make further announcements on it when the time comes even as he said they are committed to resuming action. — Michael Angelo S. Murillo





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