Guam – Guy was granted approval from Revolution club management for a weeklong leave to play on the Guam men’s national team during the Philippine Football Peace Cup, formerly named the Paulino Alcantara Peace Cup, beginning Sept. 25. Initially, he was expected to first join the Matao in December for the second round of the East Asian Cup football tournament in Hong Kong after the conclusion of the MLS season. The MLS regular season officially concludes in late October; however, even with the games left in the season, the New England Revolution missed its opportunity to play in the league playoffs.
“I felt that joining the team before the December tournament to build chemistry with them was just as important, if not more, than playing the rest of the games left in this (MLS) season,” Guy said via telephone from Boston. “I hope that by playing in the Philippines tournament with the team, I’ll understand how each of them plays on the field and also their personalities off the field. For coaches, I think the tournament in the Philippines will help them find the best team line up and determine the team’s strengths and weaknesses before the December tournament.
“As for results on the field, it’s always a goal to win and I hope to be able to help the team win all three games in the Philippines tournament,” Guy added.
Matao head coach Gary J. White also has a winning mentality for the traveling team that will be playing in the tournament in the Philippines.
“We’re going in to win it, without any disrespect to the other teams,” White said. “Since February, we have been working to create this winning mentality. It’s not going to be easy, and no one is going to give it to us. We are going to have to earn it.
“On paper, we may not be the strongest, but the game isn’t won or lost on paper, it’s won or lost on the field,” White added.
Guam will play against the Azkals, Philippines men’s national team, Chinese Taipei and Macau in the four-nation tournament. Currently, the Philippines is the highest ranked competitor at No. 150 in the world. Chinese Taipei is next at No. 176 with Guam right at its heels at No. 185. Macau is No. 200 in the world.
The traveling team roster will officially be released Monday. White and his coaching staff have close to 30 players in the training squad to be considered. The training squad also includes some of Guam’s U.S. collegiate soccer athletes in addition to the ones currently training under White at the Guam Football Association facility in Harmon.
“With the announcement of Ryan Guy joining us in the Philippines, it creates a better environment for the coaching staff, as there is even more competition for spots on the team,” White said. “There really isn’t any room for any player to be complacent. You’re only good as your last game.
“During the tournament in the Philippines, we will be ironing out the wrinkles in the team and also use it as a platform to be 100 percent ready in December,” White added.
Guy, born in San Diego, is the son of former senator Jesse Lujan and Sandra Guy-
Willoughby. Guy will play one game with the Revolution the night before boarding a plane to meet the Matao in the Philippines. Guy still will have a few more games with the Revolution when he returns to the club after the tournament.