A trophy was handed out in Fiji, while playoff pictures are becoming clearer in Papua New Guinea and New Zealand as Ligue 1 returned in Tahiti during a busy week in Pacific football.
Labasa FC claimed Champion vs Champion series honours in Fiji following a 2-1 victory over Suva in the second leg of their tie at ANZ Stadium on Sunday.
The first match produced a 1-1 draw leaving it all to play for in the second fixture and an 85th-minute goal to Taniela Waqa proved the difference.
Earlier in the contest, Remueru Tekiate put Suva ahead before Labasa drew level only moments later through Marlon Tahioa.
The second leg was played in front of a huge crowd and marked the perfect build-up for Labasa ahead of the Vodafone Premier League that is set to begin next month.
In New Caledonia, the draw for the 2021 Super League season has been confirmed.
Thirteen teams will contest the nation’s premier men’s competition and it will get underway on Saturday, March 13.
The league will start with a bang, with notable fixtures including the promoted AS Qanono meeting Horizon Patho, while Mont-Dore will welcome Hienghène Sport and AS Magenta will tackle defending champions Tiga Sport.
The competition will stream two matches per week on their Facebook and YouTube channels and is expected to run through until October; the full fixture list can be found here.
Papua New Guinea’s Women’s National Soccer League is edging towards the playoffs with the top two teams from each Conference all but confirmed.
With one round to go in the Southern Conference, FC Genesis are locked in as the top qualifier, while NCD Hekari United will join them in the playoffs in second place.
During the weekend, Genesis beat NCD FC 3-1, NCD Hekari United eased past POM City Academy 7-0 and POM City FC downed Amoana FC 2-0.
The unbeaten Poro FC will finish first in the Northern Conference while bar an unlikely turn of events Sepik FC should claim second place; Bara FC could leapfrog Sepik if they win their final two matches by large margins and Sepik lose theirs by vast margins.
In last weekend’s fixtures, Poro beat Bara FC 3-2, Sepik squeezed past Pacific Gardens FC 1-0, Markham Raings edged Rainy Lae FC 2-1 and Tusbab Laidamon FC smashed Morobe Tulip FC 3-0.
In the finals, the top side from the Northern Conference will meet the second-placed Southern team, while the top Southern team with play the No 2 Northern seed.
In New Zealand, Auckland City FC were confirmed as the minor premiers in the ISPS Handa Men’s Premiership following their 1-1 draw with the Wellington Phoenix Reserves on Saturday.
A draw was all they needed and with one week left in the regular season, the Navy Blues can enter their final game knowing they will have home advantage throughout the playoffs.
Team Wellington’s 2-0 win over Canterbury United has seen them likely secure second place, while the Hamilton Wanderers are destined for the knockout rounds after they drew 1-1 with Eastern Suburbs AFC on Sunday.
Waitakere United beat Hawke’s Bay United 2-0 in Round 13’s other match and fourth spot in the finals is up for grabs heading into the final round. For more info on the most recent round of matches, click here.
ROUND 13 ✅
Auckland City, Team Wellington and Hamilton Wanderers make the semi-finals but who will claim the 4th spot?
— New Zealand Football (@NZ_Football) February 21, 2021
Meanwhile, the participants have been confirmed for New Zealand Football’s 2021 Female Coach Mentorship Programme and the list of participants can be found here.
Tahiti’s Ligue 1 returned to the field during the weekend and Dragon picked up where they left off with a 4-2 win over Pueu as they made it three wins in a row to hold firm at the top of the table.
In the league’s other matches, second-placed Pirae hammered Jeunes Tahitiens 9-1, Tiare Tahiti trounced Olympic Mahina 9-2, Tefana topped Manu Ura 2-0 and Mataiea edged Excelsior 3-2.
The Tahiti Football Federation has put in place a number of COVID-19 protocols to ensure the competition can continue to run safely following a break since November due to the pandemic.
In the S-League in the Solomon Islands, the Henderson Eels kept up the pace at the top of the ladder with a 6-1 win over Kossa on Sunday.
The Solomon Warriors remained in second after their 5-0 victory over Laugu United and in the other matches from the weekend, Honiara City beat Central Coast 2-1, while it was goals galore between Isabel United and Marist as they played out a 4-4 draw.
Wednesday will see two mid-week fixtures with Central Coast and Laugu United playing a catch-up match, while Real Kakamora will tackle the Malaita Kingz.