Ceres nips Myanmar, gains AFC 2nd stage

MANILA, Philippines — Philippine champ Ceres Negros FC proved steadier from the spot as it outdueled Myanmar side Shan United on penalties, 4-3, after a 1-1 tie to advance to the second stage of the AFC Champions League Qualifiers Tuesday night at Thuwanna Stadium in Yangon.

Playing their first game since topping the inaugural Philippines Football League before the holidays, the Busmen survived a hard grind for 120 minutes and calmly took care of business in the pressure-packed shootout in front of Burmese crowd to settle the score.

The Busmen forged another KO duel on the road with tough A-League side Brisbane Roar, which is seeded in Stage 2 of the Qualifiers set Jan. 23 at QSAC Stadium in Queensland.

“Considering we’re just starting the season, we’re still not prepared for this kind of matches,” said Ceres coach Risto Vidakovic. “But the team responded well and they gave everything today and after 120 minutes, I think we deserve it.”

After a scoreless 90 minutes, Ceres drew first blood four minutes into the first half of extra time with Schrock curling in a ball that deflected off William Nyakwe and into the goal.

Shan, however, drew level four minutes later with Patrick Asare firing the equalizer from the edge of the box.