Inaugural OFC development tournament on the horizon
The very first OFC Youth Development Tournament is set to kick-off in Vanuatu.
The very first OFC Youth Development Tournament is set to kick-off in Vanuatu. Estonia and India are invited.
The tournament will be held in Port Vila, Vanuatu, between August 15 and 24 for the U-17 age group.
“The aim is to positively impact the players, coaches and referees and enhance their performance on and off the field, to provide experience, inspire learning and to improve performance at an international level,” the OFC wrote in a press-release.
The six invited teams are four from Oceania, one from Europe and one from Asia.
European confederation UEFA are helping out with this tournament. The tournament is being organised through the UEFA Assist Programme.
From Oceania, hosts Vanuatu will be joined by New Caledonia, Tahit and Papua New Guinea. Estonia and India are the two other nations invited.
This is the second time an Estonian team will come to Oceania after the senior men’s side did a friendly tour of the region a few years ago.
Tahiti, PNG and Estonia have been drawn in Group A, with India joining New Caledonia and Vanuatu in Group B.
The winner of the two groups will contest the final, with the third place match being played by second-placed teams. The two last teams will play each other for fifth and sixth position.
“The OFC Youth Development Tournament is bridging the gap between our U-16 and U-19 Championships and providing another opportunity for these teams to experience international football,” OFC Competition Manager Chris Kemp told the OFC website.
“These players will be in their prime for the FIFA World Cup 2026, where OFC has the opportunity to be represented by two teams for the first time, so preparations start must start now.”
The OFC also announced that they hope to have a similar tournament for girls early next year.
You can find the match schedule in the picture at the top.