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First for Roy and Fiji

Zanzeer Singh
Friday, December 13, 2013

LABASA's prolific goal scorer Roy Krishna achieved his dream and created history by becoming the first Fijian to score a goal in the 2013 FIFA Club World Cup in Morocco yesterday.

Krishna equalised for his Auckland City team against Moroccan league champions Raja Casablanca in the second spell but it was not enough as the host club fired back in injury time to secure a 2-1 victory. The loss marked Auckland City's exit from the tournament.

In an interview with FIFA.com on Monday, Krishna stated his dream of finding the back of the net.

"I would love to score in Morocco, every striker wants to do that," he said.

"If I can do that, I'll be very happy."

Krishna was scouted by Fiji Football Association national coaching director Juan Carlos Buzzetti during a trial in Labasa in 2007.

He shot to instant fame during the 2007 Oceania Under-20 playoffs ending up with the golden boot award.

Following his success with the national U20 side Krishna landed a contract with Waitakere United.

The prolific goal scorer won the 2008-2009 Southern Trust New Zealand Football club player of the year award, scoring eight times in 11 games for Waitakere United.

He made 103 appearances for Waitakere United from 2008 to 2013 scoring 72 goals.

Dubbed as Oceania's "jewel in the crown" Krishna signed up for Auckland City from Waitakere United in September.

Buzzetti who guided Krishna early in his career said Krishna was focused to do well in Morocco.

He said it was disappointing to lose in injury time especially against the home team.

"Roy was very keen do well in the FIFA World Club Cup," Buzzetti said.

"He proved himself. It is unfortunate that Auckland City lost but they have done well playing in front of a packed home crowd. The younger generation should be looking up to Roy. He has matured a lot.

"There are big opportunities for our players overseas. But they need to be dedicated and disciplined to gain success. For Roy he is working on his permanent residence in New Zealand. This is why he could not secure a contract in Europe this year. But there will be opportunity next June where his move could be to either England or Spain. We have a mutual understanding and I treat him like my son."

Krishna is not the only Fijian to play in the FIFA Club World Cup. Simione Tamanisau, Tuimasi Manuca, Osea Vakatalesau, Pita Baleitoga, Malakai Tiwa and Alvin Singh represented Papua New Guinea's Hekari United in the 2010 FIFA World Club Cup in the United Arab Emirates.

Fact File-Auckland City

Name: Roy Krishna

Club: Auckland City FC

Date of Birth: 20 August 1987

Place of Birth: Siberia, Macuata, Labasa, Fiji

Position: Striker

Height: 1.70m

Weight: 65 kgs

Squad Number: 12

International Caps/ Goals: 22 caps / 14 goals

Previous Club: Waitakere United (NZL) 2008-2013, Waitakere City (NZL) 2009-2013

OFC Champions League: 27 matches /16 goals

ASB Premiership: 75 matches / 55 goals

ASB Chatham Cup: 11 matches / 3 goals

Northern League: 32 matches / 17 goals

Honours:

FIFA Club World Cup 2008 (7th place)

OFC Champions League Winners 2008

OFC Champions League Runners-up 2010 & 2013

ASB Premiership Champions 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012 & 2013

ASB Premiership Runners-up 2009

ASB Premiership Player of the Year 2009

ASB Premiership Golden Boot 2013

OFC Under 20 Championship Golden Boot 2007

Fiji U-20, U-23 and senior international