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'Rise to the challenge'

Zanzeer Singh
Saturday, February 24, 2018

FIJI Football Association president Rajesh Patel has urged the Vodafone Lautoka players to rise to the challenge during the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC) Champions League Group C matches which get underway in Auckland, New Zealand on Sunday.

The Sugar City boys who are making their third appearance in the regional tournament are grouped with defending champions Auckland City, AS Venues of Tahiti and Madang FC of Papua New Guinea.

During the presentation ceremony on Wednesday evening, Patel said Fiji's hopes of winning the OFC Champions League rested on the Blues shoulders after Ba's exit at the group stage earlier this month.

"You have excelled in the country but now you have to go and excel on the international platform," Patel told the players.

"Ba was unlucky they didn't qualify. The last hope of Fiji now rests on your shoulders.

"But we know and we are confident that you have done wonders in Fiji and now will go to show it all over the world and those Fijian fans awaiting you in Auckland that you will be a team to be reckoned with.

"We are praying hard. You have the players that you need.

"Work together as a team with your Melanesian brothers (Brian Kaltack, Benjamin Totori) and Oceania brother (Cory Chettleburgh) who have come in.

"Football is a game that is played with 11 players and not like table tennis where you play against one other. When you play as a team you will get the result as a team," Patel said.

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