FFAS > News > 2016 OFC MEN'S U20 PRELIMINARY > American Samoa 1, Tonga 1

American Samoa 1, Tonga 1

It was a disappointing result for American Samoa after they walked away with many missed opportunities today, including a point-blank shot at goal by Joseph Purcell during the 51st minute.
“It was disappointment for us because we know we could’ve won the game,” said American Samoa’s coach, Sione Mau. “We had a lot of opportunities but we just couldn’t convert on them.”
Tonga also walked away unhappy as they could have won after being awarded a penalty kick in the 81st minute but A.S. goalie Kinikinilau Pouli made a huge save to keep the score level at 1-1.
Pouli’s older brother, Sione Moeaki, was the hero of the game after making many timely tackles on dangerous attacking opportunities for Tonga. He used his great closing down speed to clear the ball in the first half and never relented in the second.
Steven Fiso of American Samoa scored the game’s first goal after capitalizing on a goalie mistake to toe the ball to the back of the net in the 5th minute.
But five minutes later Tonga’s Anthony Likiliki blasted a shot from beyond the penalty area to equalize the game at 1-1.
Takai Pouli, the youngest of the trio of Tongan brothers born in American Samoa, also had his chances at scoring for but weak shots at goal were easy for the goalkeeper to put away.
Gabriel Taumua also had an excellent opportunity with a free kick in the 64th minute but just as the ball was about to drop into the back of the net on a beautifully struck shot it was pushed over the crossbar by Tongan goalie, Mahe Malafu.
Mau said he was not surprised by how well his team played.
“I expected them to play this well because I know what they’re capable of,” he pointed out. “Our focus now is Cook Islands and I know they have a very good team. So far we have one loss and a tie but we need to win and that’s our only goal left against the Cook Islands.”
The American Samoa U-20 squad will play on Monday, June 27 at 12 PM (Monday, 12 PM American Samoa time), before departing the next day for home via New Zealand and Samoa.
They are expected to arrive in American Samoa on June 29, American Samoa time.

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