FFAS > News > PACIFIC GAMES 2011 > Teams train for Pacific Games 2011

Teams train for Pacific Games 2011

Both squads have been training for the last two months and are in the process of finalizing the 21 players each for the competition that will be held from August 25-Sept. 9, 2011.
“We are looking forward to this major competition for our senior teams because the last time we had one for them was four years ago in Samoa,” said FFAS President Iuli Alex Godinet. “The executive committee and I have been kept up to date on this front by our CEO Tavita Taumua and we are leaving it in his and his staff’s capable hands.”
The Pacific Games’ soccer competition doubles as OFC’s first round qualifiers for the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™.
“We will have a few experienced players returning, players that took part in the competition in Samoa four years ago,” pointed out Taumua, a member of the contingent’s officials back then. “What we will also have is a lot of experienced youth players, especially on the men’s side what with our recent participation in the OFC U-20 (April) and U-17 (January) tournaments.”
FFAS Women’s Development Officer Naomi Oney is in charge of the women FFAS referees and former outstanding players Lemusa Alatasi, Iofi Avele Lalogafu’afu’a are on the men’s side. FFAS Men’s Development Officer Ruben Luvu is now free to help out after taking on the responsibilities of coach for the U-20 team that returned this past Saturday, April 30 from New Zealand.
“We have a lot of young ladies with not much experience,” explained Oney, “but who are very eager to take on this challenge and represent American Samoa.”
The teams are currently training three days a week at Kananafou Theological Seminary.
“Again, FFAS owes a huge debt to Kananafou for their willingness to provide their field to us for all of our programs this year, starting with the boys and girls high school leagues and now our training,” Taumua said. “Our field will be ready in another two months so we are very fortunate to be able to have a field to train our squads on at the moment.”
Taumua went on to say that by June the teams will be practicing six times a week.
New Caledonia is the defending gold medalist for the men’s side while Papua New Guinea won gold in the women’s division.
Other participating teams for the men and women’s competitions in New Caledonia are Tahiti, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Tonga, Kiribati, Samoa, Cook Islands, Tuvalu, New Caledonia, Vanuatu and Solomon Islands.

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