Associate members to play in OFC tournaments?

The OFC could allow associate members into their tournaments and start the funding back up, according to TIFA President Soseala Tinilau.

CONIFA World Football Cup 2018 - Tuvalu flag
Tuvalu posing ahead of their game against Szekely Land at the CONIFA World Football Cup. (Photo credit: Con Chronis)

Tuvalu is only an Associate Member of the OFC and for a few years now this has meant that they get no money and no help from the OFC. But that may all be about to change.

On the Facebook page Tuvaluan From Within, Tuvalu Islands Football Association President Tinilau says:

“We’re very thankful that the former President of TIFA Excellency Paulson Panapa is now the High Commissioner to New Zealand. I’ve asked for his help in trying to re-connect Tuvalu with OFC, and, in the last two weeks, we received an email from the OFC Secretary General confirming the results of their Executive Meeting,” he says.

Then he goes on to say what the outcome of that meeting was:

“They’ve agreed to work with Associate Members including TIFA and provide funding again. They’ll also allow us to take part in their OFC tournaments. So, we’re very happy now. OFC has also agreed to send a team to do a scoping exercise in Tuvalu to help us become OFC and FIFA members. We’re crossing our fingers that we’ll be able to achieve these goals soon and get more funds so that we can advance our football activities in Tuvalu.”

Read the full post at the bottom of the article.

It would seem that the OFC are allowing Tuvalu back into the fold and even competing at OFC tournaments.

Whether the same goes for Kiribati and Niue, the other two Associate Members of the OFC, is still unclear.

Football in Oceania has tried to get in touch with various members of the OFC Executive Committee to verify this story, but has so far gotten no response.

FiO will be back with more on this story as soon as we have it.

Update 14.03.20 10:50 CET: Speaking to Football in Oceania, TIFA President Soseala Tinilau confirms that the Facebook post is real and that the contact has been established between TIFA and OFC.

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Author: Ola Bjerkevoll

A passion for everything football and especially in Oceania. Owner of Football in Oceania.

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