Milestone deal with adidas a testament to Filipinas’ growth

Luisa Morales - Philstar.com
Milestone deal with adidas a testament to Filipinas� growth
Filipinas' Hali Long (left) and Inna Palacios (right) with PFF Secretary General Atty. Ed Gastanes and adidas Philippines General Manager Anthony Frangos
Courtesy of adidas

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine women's national football team celebrated a unique milestone on Thursday, as they signed a multi-year partnership with sportswear giant adidas as the team's official outfitter and sponsor.

Coming off a year of historic finishes and qualifying to the Philippines' first-ever FIFA Women's World Cup, the Filipinas have gained the attention of everyone — including adidas.

No stranger to struggles in getting sponsorships before, veterans of the team relished the development as more and more stakeholders finally get around to investing in the team.

"The time I've been on the team, we would be wearing nothing, no logos, and sometimes just bringing our own things, or showing up as you are, and to kind of have a brand like adidas that Hali [Long] had said, have professionalism with them, a global, iconic brand, I feel like that instantenously when anyone kinda looks like us, we kinda garner some respect in some way," said forward Sarina Bolden during a press conference about the partnership at New World Makati.

"But you know, we've been building respect over just a year, one year, but to have that name, that brand of adidas, adding to the Philippines women's team, kinda just shows how far we've gone," she added.

Goalkeeper Inna Palacios, for her part, believed that the brand saw something special in the team, something they've been working on for the longest time.

Having the brand's three stripes on their jerseys starting in the 2023 Pinatar Cup next week, Palacios and the rest of the Filipinas plan to continue their development.

"It's just a dream like, really, it's just a dream. From the very beginning, and to see the team where we're at the moment it's truly incredible. I didn't think it would happen in my lifetime but I just kept believing and the girls also believed in that same goal, and together, as a unit, we worked towards that and just to have adidas, such a big brand, also represent and believe in the team, that means they see something special," she said.

"It's so nice to see that you know, now we're reaping the fruits of our labor... We're all just gonna be so blessed and thankful and we really appreciate all the efforts that everyone has been putting on to the team because we know it's not an easy work and we know that there's still so much to do but I guarantee that these girls are not gonna stop until we really like reach our full potential and we will do our best to make you guys all proud and our country very proud," she added.

Her fellow goalkeeper Olivia McDaniel shared the same sentiments, saying the Filipinas wearing the same brand as some of the bigger teams in the Women's World Cup boosted their own confidence in playing at par with them.

"It's an incredible thing to get to wear their logo on our jersey and like Sarina said, that respect, that we kind of carry now like the other bigger countries that we'll be playing against in the world cup," said McDaniel.

"Respect isn't given, it's earned and I think throughout the past five, or six years, we've been trying to get that respect from the countries that we've played in trying to get to where we are today so I think we've really earned our position right now and I think we just wanna keep going up from here."

The Philippine Football Federation inked the deal with adidas that is set to last for four years, one of the longest contracts the federation has entered into with a brand.

Apart from the Filipinas, adidas wll to outfit the youth teams of the women's side as part of their push to support Philippine women's football.

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