Opinion

FIFA Opens Door, Football Future In Our Young Generation

Our football future depends on the next generation as they carry the nation’s hope of a brighter and better tomorrow. The development, resources, manpower and financial input put in today
15 Jan 2017 11:00
FIFA Opens Door, Football Future In Our Young Generation
FIFA

Our football future depends on the next generation as they carry the nation’s hope of a brighter and better tomorrow.

The development, resources, manpower and financial input put in today will produce and make better players tomorrow.

So much development programmes have been carried out over the years, but our success was limited or confined to the Oceania region.

The recent announcement by FIFA to increase the number of teams from 32 to 48 at the 2026 World Cup opens the door for Fiji and other Oceania countries to compete with the world.

But we need to be cautious. Sometimes we expect our reps to excel on the world stage not focusing on doing their homework first at home.

A case in point was our Fijian U23 team who competed with the world at the Rio Olympics last year. And their performance was a perfect gauge where we stand and how much more work needs to be done.

We had high hopes but our Olympians came back winless and punished, perhaps shocked by the enormity of the challenge.

The Fiji Football Association funded the Olympic preparations with tours to Spain and Brazil under coach Frank Farina, but the Fijians failed to tick in Rio.

However, Fiji FA should be commended for continuing to implement a vibrant and constructive development programmes for the future.

The recent appointment of Vodafone Fijian national coach Christophe Gamel is timely.

He brings a wealth of experience and further to that, a strict disciplinarian.

Fijians needs a coach who puts his foot down and means business right from the start.

He has already warned that only players who show commitment and take their role seriously will be considered for the national team.

The Frenchman, who will join the senior national squad members for the first time next week, has already planned out what he wants from the players as individuals and as a team.

The New Zealand All Whites play Fiji in home and away games in March for the Oceania Football Confederation title, with the winner advancing to a playoff against a South American side for a spot in the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

He will not tolerate any player who takes their inclusion in the squad lightly.

On the same token, the Vodafone Fijian Under-17 team departs today to take part in the OFC U17 Championship in Tahiti on February 12- 22.

The team has been together for 12 months and Fiji FA spent a lot of money for students to relocate from across Fiji to Suva.

They are our stars for the future. If we are to make a telling impact at the 2026 World Cup and beyond, the U17s are our hope for brighter, better tomorrow.

 

 

Fiji Sun Instagram
Fiji Plus
Subscribe-to-Newspaper
error: