MANILA, Philippines – Another era has come to an end for Philippine football as the pioneers of the Azkals' resurgence – the Younghusband brothers – have decided to hang up their boots.
Months after his brother Phil bid farewell to the national team, James Younghusband also announced his retirement on Thursday, June 25.
"Time to say goodbye. Thank you for the amazing memories. I have loved playing this game," wrote the older Younghusband.
Younghusband, 33, ended his football career with 101 caps and 12 international goals for the Philippine Azkals.
He made his national team debut in 2005 as part of the Philippine men's Under-23 squad and played in the country's last hosting of the Southeast Asian Games.
The Fil-British midfielder greatly contributed to the resurgence of Philippine football in the "Miracle of Hanoi" when the Philippines barged into the 2010 AFF Suzuki Cup semifinals after blanking defending champion Vietnam, 2-0, in front of their home crowd.
Younghusband was also part of the Azkals squad that nailed a historic berth to the Asian Cup in March 2018. (READ: Phil Younghusband hopes Azkals' barging to Asian Cup will be 'catalyst' for PH football)
Toward the end of his career, the older Younghusband also embraced his role as an impact substitute after he was dropped from the final 23-man squad for the World Cup qualifying match against Bahrain in 2015. (Rappler Talk Sports: Younghusband brothers on Azkals' Asian Cup berth)
In the club football scene, Younghusband was a member of the Loyola Meralco Sparks in the United Football League, Davao Aguilas FC in the Philippines Football League, and last played for Ceres-Negros FC. – Rappler.com
More commonly known as Bee, Beatrice Go is a multimedia sports reporter for Rappler, who covers Philippine sports governance, national teams, football, and the UAAP. Stay tuned for her news and features on Philippine sports and videos like the Rappler Athlete’s Corner and Rappler Sports Timeout.