PM Tuilaepa to Manu Samoa: “You have no guts”
26 June, 2018, 4:00 pm
APIA, 26 JUNE 2018 (SAMOA OBSERVER)—Samoan Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi, who is also the Chairman of the Samoa Rugby Union, did not mince words when he visited the Manu Samoa team last week.
“You have no guts,” he told them.
Prime Minister Tuilaepa revealed the gist of his message in Parliament when it convened to discuss and pass the 2018/2019 budget.
Tuilaepa said it is not a secret that Manu Samoa supporters are extremely disappointed, and frustrated by the team’s form lately.
He reminded Parliament that the Manu Samoa has not been able to win a single game in their past ten outings, eight during Namulauulu Alama Ieremia’s term and the two last week against Fiji and Tonga.
So when he visited the team, Tuilaepa said he just gave it to them.
“I told them to look at Tonga, their population is nowhere near 200,000 and yet they are playing cricket with you guys,” he said.
“This shows you have no guts. You played ten games and you lost in all of those ten games, so what does that tell me, ‘you have no guts.’
“That is what I said to them on Wednesday night.”
Tuilaepa’s comments come a week before the team takes on Germany at the Apia Park for the first of two Rugby World Cup qualifying games.
In the build up, the Prime Minister said the team has their work cut out for them.
“I said, if you don’t win this game then you all have to resign from the team,” he said. “I told them that it would be better to let the kids playing in the Super 9 to represent the Manu Samoa if they can’t handle it.”
Tuilaepa added that they keep dropping the ball because “you are afraid.”
Later during his weekly media programme, Tuilaepa seemed a lot calmer.
“Everything happens for a reason, and with this game with Germany the Manu Samoa will come back strong in this game,” he said.
“The reason being is because we have reached the very bottom and there is nowhere else for us to go except coming back up.
“They will be playing against the team that has no knowledge whatsoever on how to play rugby, so we must win this game.
“And the other good thing about this is that when we win against Germany and make it through the World Cup, we will be in a good pool. So I would be very shocked if we don’t make it to the Quarter final,” Tuilaepa said.