Oceania: New Zealand defeat Tahiti to claim FIFA place
The OFC Under-17 Championship final has been won by tournament hosts New Zealand for the fourth time in the nation’s history following their 2-0 win against Tahiti. A 2-0 scoreline was also sufficient for the Solomon Islands to claim third place in their play-off against Vanuatu.
Both of the goals came in the first half for New Zealand who have won the last three tournaments all at the expense of today’s opponents Tahiti. Cameron Howieson gave the All Whites the lead after just seven minutes with the lead doubled on 36 minutes through Tim Payne. The third place play-off also saw two first half goals as Solo Kuki (13 minutes) and Harrison Mala (26) ensured that the Solomon Islands finished the tournament on a high against Vanuatu even if they were playing merely for pride.
New Zealand’s reward for winning the tournament is to gain the solitary OFC berth in the FIFA Under-17 World Cup later this year in Mexico.