Oceania: American Samoa just one step away from second stage (+video)
Having been the laughing stock of world football for many years, the tiny Pacific nation of American Samoa is just one step away from progressing beyond the first stage of 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifying following a good start to their campaign.
Rock bottom of the FIFA World Rankings over the last few years and having failed to win a single competitive match for 17 years, American Samoa began their first stage campaign on Tuesday by defeating Tonga by two goals to one with Ramin Ott and Shalom Luani getting on the score sheet. Yesterday saw American Samoa keep up the good work with a respectable draw against the Cook Islands, Luani scoring his second goal of the campaign after 24 minutes only for Cook Islands to draw level on the hour mark when Tala Luvu put through his own net. Nonetheless the start has given American Samoa a reasonable chance of getting the second stage of Oceania qualifying but they must beat Samoa, who has hosted all of the qualifying games over the last few days, in order to go further and meet up against the likes of New Zealand in the 2012 OFC Nations Cup which will also double as FIFA World Cup qualifying.