MANILA – The Philippine football community was saddened after the sudden passing of modern-day legend Rudy del Rosario.
On Friday, it was announced that the former striker, who was part of the national team during the 90’s especially in the 1991 Southeast Asian Games, in which the Philippines stunned Malaysia, died at the age of 51.
“Philippine football lost one of its legends in Rudy Del Rosario who not only made an impact with his play on the pitch but with his tremendous passion for the game that reflected in his work even after his playing career,” said PFF president Nonong Araneta. “The wonderful tributes are proof of Rudy’s amazing impact in the Philippine football community. He will be missed.”
Del Rosario helped found Kaya Iloilo, which has become one of the top football clubs domestically and in the Southeast Asian region, in 1996.
Del Rosario would coach the club during its early days, when it still called Makati home, and see the team rise to become a three-time top division champion and a perennial team to beat.
“Rudy was not only one of the founders and pillars of Kaya FC, he was a staunch advocate for football across the Philippines,” the club said in a statement.
Del Rosario tried his luck with the national futsal team in 2001 before focusing on building up Kaya Iloilo.
He then got a chance to coach the Philippine team to the 2011 Homeless World Cup.
“Rudy used football as a platform to help uplift the lives of many young players with his different coaching roles especially with the Homeless World Cup team,” Araneta said. (PNA)