Tahiti’s Ligue 1 champions for 2018/2019, AS Venus, recently completed the season double with their 3-0 victory over AS Tefana in the final of the Coupe de Tahiti Nui.
The win sees the side from Mahina set to participate in both the 7th round of the Coupe de France in November 2019 and the 2020 OFC Champions League.
The final had originally been scheduled to take place in May, but with both the U-20 and senior national teams involved in competitions, the match was postponed. This meant the teams were somewhat different to those which competed throughout the season as the followed the inter-season transfer window.
Venus didn’t make a huge amount of changes in the off-season, with coach Sam Garcia indicating a final was a good way to get the new season underway and test the way the squad has adapted to the changes.
“It’s great to start the season with a final. It meant we trained seriously because there was a big match waiting for us straight away, the AS Venus coach stated.
“It’s true, we had a few changes but it’s been the same for both clubs.”
Not only did Tefana have a number of player changes, it also saw some changes in the staff with the clubs former goalkeeper coach Xavier Samin taking over the head coach role with Pascal Vahirua his assistant.
“Despite the departure of several of our principal players, we put together a team with a mix of youth and experience,” Samin explained.
“Venus were the favourites, major favourite, with the majority of their team in the senior squad. Even if our adversaries were the favourites, it was still a final so there was always a chance for us.|
Venus captain Teaonui Tehau continued to show why he’s the man of the moment in French Polynesia football circles netting a brace in the victory.
“I’m really happy to have scored, but more importantly I’m really proud to have won the cup,” the talismanic striker said.
“We’ve managed the double with our new recruits, my cousin Tamatoa (Tetauira) and Tauhiti Keck. With the arrival of my cousin in attack we saw that it’s going to work well. I scored two and he scored one.”
Tetauira, the former captain of rival club AS Dragon, believes the team have the quality to continue to achieve big things this coming season.
“For me, I’m really happy to be able to play with my family, and also happy that with my first match, I earned my first title with Venus. The icing on the cake was the goal. I’m really happy to be playing alongside my cousin, and with all my cousins in the team too.”
The draw for the 7th round of the Coupe de France will be held at the end of October with the match scheduled for mid-November in Tahiti.