TAHITI – Former France international players Lionel Charbonnier and Christian Karembeu will star alongside their 1998 FIFA World Cup winning team-mates at least two more times when
the team plays two friendly matches in Tahiti and New Caledonia in May 2008.
Charbonnier and Karembeu joined OFC President/FIFA Vice-President Reynald Temarii at a press conference at the Radisson Hotel flanked by TNTV representative Yves Haupert and Charles Tetaria to
discuss the prospect of Zidane, Petit, Wiltord, Barthez and Blanc lacing up their boots to honour Tahitian-born France international Pascal Vaihirua and New Caledonia’s Lifou-born France
international Christian Karembeu.
The former Real Madrid midfielder Karembeu has played an active role in humanitarian causes for both Oceania Football Confederation and FIFA and is honoured most of his team-mates from the golden
era of French football will make an appearance in not only his benefit match, but in a match for Pascal Vaihirua.
“This is a wonderful opportunity for us to give something back to the people of Oceania and for the team from ’98 to again enjoy each other’s friendship. These two matches will give something back
to the people and it is good that Te Rama Ora, Tokani Nui and La Ligue will benefit from this event in French-Polynesia”
“I extend my thanks to the OFC President Reynald Temarii, Federation Caledonienne de Football and Federation Tahitienne de Football for making these matches in Tahiti and Noumea possible,” Karembeu
OFC President/FIFA Vice-President Reynald Temarii was pleased that FIFA Football for Hope would help harness the power of the world’s most popular sport to give something back to the people of
Oceania and he thanked TNTV for its enduring support in bringing football to screens across French-Polynesia.
FTF Technical Director Lionel Charbonnier said he was delighted to be involved in a project that actively assists in contributing to worthy causes in Oceania. The former France, Auxerre and Glasgow
Rangers goalkeeper said he was looking forward to seeing many of his former team-mates in such an idyllic setting and for worthy social causes.
“This will be great for the team from ’98 to be together again and I think it is the first time a world champion team has come to Oceania. We won the FIFA World Cup because we were family rather
than friends and it will be good to play again,” Charbonnier said.
France ’98 will play a Pascal Vaihirua XI at Stade Pater, Tahiti, Monday 26th May, 2008, with a sell-out crowd expected. Another match is scheduled for New Caledonia against a Christian Karembeu XI
in Noumea also likely to be sold out.
The opportunity to see some of the world’s greatest footballers performing a star turn in French-speaking Oceania has won the approval of several non-Government organisations based in
French-Polynesia such as Te Rama Ora, L’association Tokani Nui, and Le Comite de Polynesie Francaise de la Ligue Nationale contre le cancer.
Te Rama Ora performs work in French Polynesia assisting the victims of crimes rehabilitate and empower those suffering domestic violence to speak out about their situation rather than endure
physical abuse in silence.
Tokani Nui assists those suffering from mental illnesses and disabilities in leading a life of quality and fulfilment. Tokani Nui has a range of support programmes and networks designed to assist
families in coping with family members affected by mental challenges. The La Ligue programme is active in the fight against the high incident rate of cancer in French-Polynesia.
The invitation list makes for mouth-watering reading and includes Zinedine Zidane, Fabien Barthez, Bixente Lizarazu, Didier Deschamps, Emmanuel Petit, Christian Karembeu, Alain Boghossian, Marcel
Desailly, Lionel Charbonnier, Robert Pires, Youri Djorkaeff, Christophe Dugarry, Franck Lebeouf, Sylvain Wiltord, Vincent Candela, Bernard Lama, Bernard Diomede, David Trezeguet, Patrick Vieira,
and Stephane Guivarch.
Pascal Vaihirua will be joined by New Caledonian-born Antoine Kombouare who starred in Ligue 1 with Nantes and Scottish Premier League with Aberdeen and nephew Marama Vahirua who has forged a
successful career in Ligue 1 with Nantes and Nice making regular appearances in the UEFA Champions League.
Details of the second match will be announced in due course.
Pascal Vahirua XI vs. France ’98
Monday 26th May, 2008
At Stade Pater
Kick-off: 2000hrs local time
Tickets available from Federation Tahitienne de Football (FTF) from 15th December, 2007 for those affiliated with FTF clubs with tickets available to the public from 15 January, 2008.
Ticket prices have been set at 3000XPF* uncovered, 5000XPF* for the tribune.
For more news and information about the France ’98 testimonials please visit www.oceaniafootball.com and www.ftf.pf
For more information please contact:
Olivier Huc phone +689 79 22 79
TNTV +689 47 36 16
email [email protected]
Gordon Glen Watson phone +64 (0) 21 994 520
OFC Media Officer +64 (0) 21 567 754
email [email protected]