OFC Oceania Football Confederation
The OFC has set the qualification criteria for the 2007-08 OFC Champions League (or O-League), confirming that the top five clubs in this season’s O-League will secure automatic entry for their association into Oceania’s continental championship in 2007-08. They will be joined by the winner of an O-League qualifying competition involving this season’s sixth-placed club and one club each from the Cook Islands, Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea scheduled for the Cook Islands in May 2007. The OFC stated that all clubs involved in future O-League competitions must qualify from a recognized national league competition and not from a tournament or mini-tournament held over a period of a few weeks.
OFC is set to launch a profound restructuring of football for the entire South Pacific region worth an estimated USD 12 million over a twelve-year period from 2007-2018. The programme, called OFC Vision, is the brainchild of OFC President and future FIFA vice-president Raynald Temarii and is aimed at building the Pacific community by using football as a tool to develop nations. “I see the key element of OFC Vision being the education and empowerment of our youth to become self-sufficient, unifird, responsible and involved citizens. The number of youths in the South Pacific aged 0-20 will increase from 5.5 million to 6.8 million by 2018 and I believe football can help address many of the key social issues facing these youngsters in the coming years,” said Temarii.
New Zealand Soccer celebrated the opening of its USD 1 million artificial turf pitch at North Harbour Stadium with a friendly match between the New Zealand Women’s U-17 team and a Media XI featuring former All Whites such as Fred de Jong, Marl Elrick and Colin Tuaa.