In the first leg of the first qualifying match of the 2005 OFC Club Championships, AS Magenta (New Caledonia) were too strong for Nikao FC (Cook Islands) winning 4-0 after leading 3-0 at halftime.
The first international match to be played at the OFC Academy grounds was an exciting affair. Nikao FC dominated the much of the first half and nearly went to the lead in the 30th minute. But the experience of AS Magenta, who are French territory finalists, proved decisive. An error by Nikao FC goalkeeper, Tony Jamieson, saw Michael Hmae shoot at an open net to open the scoring. Then unfortunately for Nikao FC two clumsy penalties were awarded within 5 minutes of each other which gave Michaek Hmae his hat trick and a half-time lead of 3-0.
In the second half Nikao FC rallied and Paul Van Ekye and Tuka Tisam would occasionally test the AS Magenta defence but could not convert. Nikao FCs’ defence was resolute in the second half only allowing one goal in the 62nd minute by Jules Wea.
“If you take the two penalties away it was an excellent result for us. We are a young side with half the team under 20, so the boys should be proud of the way they played considering the strength of AS Magenta side” said Nikao FC coach, Sean Willis
Jean Paul Cureau, coach of the AS Magenta side was also happy with the performance of his team. “We took a long time to settle but my team play very well. It was a good start but we have some improvements to make”
The second leg will be played on Saturday 12th February at the OFC Academy grounds at 14.00pm. The winner of the play-off series will advance to the final round of the 2005 OFC Club Championships in Tahiti from 30 May – 10 June 2005.
Nikao FC: Jamieson Tony, Jamieson Mark, Keu Romeo, Une Rouru, Oti Chambers, Joseph, Van Eyke Paul Luiz, Mateariki Teariki, Tisam Tuka, Willis Stephen, Bartillard John,
Subs: Anonga Tisam, Alan Martin, Chambers Tristram, Wearing Remi, Willis Roy, Robertson Cameron, Tisam Natham,
AS Magenta: Zohune Jeil, Ouka Nicolas, Kaudre Robert, Wiako Jacky, Longue Steevens, Wadriako Robert, Poatinda Paul, Wajoka Pierre, Hmae Michel, Wea Jules, Sinedo Andre
Subs: Hnageje Christophe, Jiako Albert, Kaudre Noel, Kaudre Elia, Sameke Louis, Magoenpawiro, Christian, Hne Police
Goals: AS Magenta: 11. Hmae Michel (38th, 41st, 45th) – 6. Wea Jules (62nd)