The Philippines have won presidential approval for their performances so far in the AFF Suzuki Cup.
Simon McMenemy's side are on the brink of qualifying for the semi-finals after a glorious 2-0 victory over defending champions Vietnam and a 1-1 draw with Singapore in Group B.
Philippine President Benigno Simeon "Noynoy" Aquino III hailed the exploits of the team in an official statement.
"President Aquino conveys his congratulations to the Philippine team's victory (over Vietnam) at the AFF Suzuki Cup in Vietnam," said presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda.
He added that sport in the Philippines was better known for its achievements in boxing, including the successes of Manny Pacquiao, but football was now pushing for recognition.
"These victories (in boxing and the recent Asian Games) affirm yet again the Filipino's drive to excel, noting further that the Philippine team's triumph in the AFF Suzuki Cup signifies an enthusiasm to join the community of nations in the international arena of football," said the presidential spokesman.
"The President has expressed his support for sports endeavors where Filipinos excel and bring pride to our country."
A draw against Myanmar in their final Group B game on Wednesday will see the Philippines progress to the last four for the first time in the AFF Suzuki Cup.
Wednesday, 8 December 2010