Today we feature a young American Samoan U-20 player who has already made multiple appearances for her country at senior international level, Beulah Oney.
Beulah Oney was introduced to the game of soccer almost as soon as she had learnt to walk (three years old) and by the age of six she was competing in every soccer competition that her mother, Naomi, could enter her in.
In fact she says her mother – Football Federation of American Samoa Women’s Development Officer Naomi Oney – has been the main driving force behind her football development.
“She took me to many football games when I was young,” Oney recalls, “and taught me how to play at the same time.”
That early start and enthusiastic embrace of competitive football has enabled Oney to garner plentiful experience and by the age of 14 she earned her first international cap as a member of the American Samoan National women’s team.
As a member of the national squad she then went on to compete at the 2007 Samoa South Pacific Games, playing in two championship games against Papua New Guinea and Fiji.
Ruben Luvu, coach of the current women’s U-20 squad is excited about Oney’s potential for improvement and natural aptitude for the game.
“One of the great things about her is that because she is young, she can still learn a lot and improve at the same time. Another great strength is that she is naturally athletic.”
“She’s good at high balls, has good timing as a defender and reads the game really well,” Luvu says.
For her part, Oney is totally focused on the immediate competitive challenge facing her U-20s national team.
“I’m happy about the opportunity to go and compete in the OFC U-20s Championship and I’m also a little nervous about playing against those other well prepared teams,” she explained.
“But I’m prepared, our team is prepared, and we’re ready for the challenge,” Oney adds.
Oney has two siblings, brothers Tafuna (27) and Vili (20), both of whom also play the sport. Her brother Tafuna, a Staff Sgt, in the U.S. Army, is currently stationed in Germany and has served two tours in Iraq.
Occupation: High School Student (11th Grade)
Full Name: Beulah Naomi Oney
Date of Birth: April 22, 1993
Place of Birth: American Samoa
Height: 5’7” (1.7 meters)
Position: Centre back
Club: Tafuna Jets
Football Years: 10
Favourite Football Star: Marta (Brazil)
– 2007 Samoa South Pacific Games American Samoa Women’s National Team member
– 2006 Elementary League MVM, 2008-2009 High School Junior Varsity Division MVP
Courtesy of FFAS Media (www.ffas.as)