PNG hopes to bounce back at Championships

Papua New Guinea U17 men’s soccer team will be hoping to bounce back with a win when they take on Vanuatu today, February 14, at the Oceania Football Confederation Championship.

The OFC championship is being hosted in Tahiti from February 11-24 with eight countries participating.

Our boys are pooled in Group A alongside New Caledonia, Tahiti and Vanuatu while Group B consists of Fiji, Samoa, Solomon Islands and New Zealand.

PNG is currently third on the points ladder after round one behind New Caledonia on first place and Tahiti on second. 

In their first match on Saturday, PNG went down to New Caledonia 3-2 while Tahiti defeated Vanuatu 1-0.

New Caledonia was the first to score 1-0 through Paul Gope-Fenepej five minutes into the game.

Gope-Fenepej scored his second goal 26 minutes later to take New Caledonia up 2-0.

PNG fought back, scoring its first goal of the tournament through Kimson Kapai in the 35th minute to take the score 2-1 at half-time.

In the second half, PNG’s Barthy Kerobin scored the equalizer 2-2 in the 64th minute.

New Caledonia beefed up attack and scored a last minute goal through Bernard Iwa, minutes to full time, to take his team to victory (3-2).

PNG will take on Tahiti on Friday, February 17.

Quintina Naime