The 2020 OFC Champions League Qualifiers are set to take place in New Zealand, with one less team than normal.
Only three teams will take part in this year’s OCL qualifiers as Pago Youth from American Samoa have pulled out due to the measles epidemic that has been happening around the Pacific.
Their Samoan counterparts of Lupe Ole Soaga will take part, however, as their village was relativley unharmed from the epidemic that struck hard in Samoa.
Lupe captain Andrew Setefano say they play for their country, now more than ever.
““It’s a big motivation for us because this tournament here, we are going to dedicate to our country and our family back at home, especially those who lost their lives,” he told the OFC website.
Lupe are up first in the tournament, against Tongan side Veitongo. That match kick’s off tonight at the Ngahue Reserve in Auckland, Saturday afternoon local time.
You can see the full schedule in the picture at the top of this article.
The Tongans Veitongo are back at the OCL after a year off where Lotoha’apai represented the nation. They once again look to make history and gain that elusive spot to the main competition. Perhaps with one less team in the hunt, they could manage it?
From the Cook Islands come Tupapa Maraerenga yet again. The black and white-striped outfit comes off a historic double for the club. They claimed both the CIFA Cup and the Round Cup (the national league) title for the men and women’s sides in the same season for the first time ever. This will be the islander’s third straight qualifying campaign.
The winner of the Qualifying Stage will join Group D in the OFC Champions League 2020, which includes Auckland City FC (New Zealand), Ba FC (Fiji) and AS Venus (Tahiti).
The runner-up from the qualifiers will enter Group C, featuring AS Magenta (New Caledonia), AS Tiare Tahiti (Tahiti) and the Solomon Warriors (Solomon Islands).
All matches from the OFC Oceania Champions League Qualifiers can be live streamed from the website Mycujoo.