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'More work needed at grassroots'

Zanzeer Singh
Saturday, December 14, 2013

FIJI Football Association development officer Usenio Logaivou believes the grassroots program for young girls needs to be strengthened so local teams can match overseas opponents.

The national girl's under-17 and U20 teams participated in the Ultimate Fiji Cup held in Ba, Lautoka and Nadi this week and failed to reach the finals.

The locals were outclassed by teams from Australia, which boasted superior fitness and game structure.

In the girl's U17 final, International Football Group New South Wales defeated Victoria 2-1.

Logaivou said the girls got a lot of game time against stronger opposition.

"It was a good opportunity for our girls to showcase their talents," Logaivou said. "We exposed many new players against the quality opponents from Australia. They played well in the sense that they won a couple of games. Certainly the girls learnt a lot from the visitors.

"It was evident that their structure was better. The skill level was higher. It means that their grassroots level pathway is better organised.

"They have strong weekly competitions. It is all about the consistency of getting the competition every week. That is why they were successful."

Results

Playoffs: Girls U15 Victoria 1 Fiji Blue 2, Girls U16 Fiji 1 Victoria 1, Boys U17 Fiji West Blue 7 Harbord 0

Finals: U15 Girls International Football Group New South Wales 5 Fiji 3, U17 Girls International Football Group New South Wales 2 Victoria 1, U17 Boys Fiji 1-0 IFGNSW.