By Jonas Terrado
Jovin Bedic and Eric Giganto came through with second half goals to give Kaya a 2-0 win over Shan United in the start of its AFC Cup campaign Wednesday at the Thuwunna Stadium in Yangon, Myanmar.
Bedic broke the ice with a spot kick in the 74th minute before Giganto came off the bench to produce the second goal in the 85th that capped off Kaya’s hard-fought away victory.
Kaya claimed the full three points in the first match under the coaching duties of Oliver Colina and Yu Hoshide who were tasked to lead the club to improve on its early exit in last year’s continental competition.
There were a few chances by Kaya to produce the opener in the first half but attempts by newly-acquired Takumi Uesato and twice from Simone Rota went past the goalpost.
Rota’s first chance came off a free kick by Jayson Panhay but his glancing header bounced inches away from the far post while second came just before halftime but another header sailed wide left.
Host Shan United almost got the lead in the second half when Yakubu Abudbakar’s left-footed attempt hit the near post.
Kaya found the opening when substitute Arnel Amita was fouled inside the box by Djedje Maximin Djawa, allowing Bedic to deliver the penalty kick.
Amita also set up the second goal when he was able to send a pass to Giganto for a long attempt, five minutes before stoppage time.
Shan United suffered its second straight loss against a Philippine club this year, adding to its 3-2 defeat to Ceres-Negros in last month’s AFC Champions League Qualifiers at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.