Ladies and Gentlemen,
The Football Federation of American Samoa (FFAS) is relatively new under this name. I am also fairly new as President of this federation. However, I cannot say the same about football or soccer, as it is most commonly referred to in American Samoa.
The development of football/soccer has come a long way for our soccer community and people of American Samoa. The road has been rougher than better most of the time throughout the years, when it first started. But I am not going to dwell on that. I view the past as things of the past, which I would call “excess baggage,” if the ultimate goal of FFAS is to further develop soccer from where it is now to a level platform with international standards.
As President of FFAS, our credibility has been restored after the normalization period. I take this as a solid foundation and harmonious platform for the local football/soccer community to rebuild the equal footing it is entitled to among FIFA’s 208-member associations.
For me and to all of us involved, the key word is “harmonious” because I always believe that by working together, we can overcome many challenges. It means that we must gracefully let go of the things of the past. Let us not carry any more excess baggage, and must only look back to the past to learn from our mistakes, and not to repeat them.
We have a big task ahead. The good thing in handling this task is that we have been blessed with another opportunity by FIFA and OFC to develop on an equal level. We are also blessed with their constant and undying support and assistance. All we have to do is implement and fulfill our goals. It means that we must stay focused, work harder and be true to ourselves.
I believe we must do more that just develop the game in American Samoa. It is vital for our people, especially our younger generations, that football/soccer grows. It is a corporate responsibility we have been tasked with, to ensure this happens. It is our duty, as officials, clubs, associations and members of the football/soccer family, to see this sport not only develop but grow.
We owe it to the future of the people and children of American Samoa, to FIFA and OFC. But above all, we owe it to ourselves. May the grace of God bond us in spirit so this program is a success – siofua.
Iuli Alex Godinet