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Pivotal day looming for Group A contenders  

Hekari United fans watching their team against Eastern Suburbs at Sir John Guise Stadium (Phototek)

Wednesday’s double header at Port Moresby’s Sir John Guise Stadium is shaping up to be decisive as Galaxy FC and Eastern Suburbs will be looking for back-to-back wins to take a huge step towards securing a place in the next stage, before local favourites Hekari United face defending champions Hienghene Sport in a crucial match for both sides trying to keep their OFC Champions League 2020 campaigns alive.

Tournament newcomers Galaxy FC from Vanuatu produced an impressive display in their opening match to stun reigning champions Hienghene Sport, brushing the New Caledonians aside with surprising ease.

Despite arriving in Papua New Guinea as underdogs, Batram Suri’s men were well organised in defence and clinical in front of goal courtesy of some expert finishing from the likes of Terence Carter and Kensi Tangis.

And the Galaxy coach is hoping for more of the same from his players against their fellow debutants Eastern Suburbs from Auckland, New Zealand.

“It will not be easy to play against them because they are a very smart team and they have been together for a while. It’s a very good young side but we are here to challenge them. We have come up with a strategy that hopefully will work against them,” he explained.

Meanwhile the Kiwis were made to work hard for their narrow 2-1 victory over Hekari United.

Italian striker Martin Bueno looked impressive as he grabbed a brace, but Tony Reading’s men struggled to break down their opponents in the second half despite their numerical advantage following David Muta’s sending off in the 53rd minute.

The Eastern Suburbs coach is expecting another stern test against the Vanuatu champions.

“Yeah definitely a big game, we just have to make sure we have all recovered well because the game against Hekari took its toll on our players.  We will have to manage our player well but we have good depth, so I will probably make some changes for the next game to make sure we have some fresh legs out there.” hinted Readings.

Felix Tagawa couldn’t hide his disappointment following the reigning champions’ shock 4-1 defeat to Galaxy in their opener, but the Hienghene coach will trust in his side’s ability to bounce back against Hekari United.

The New Caledonians have plenty of quality across the park and they are proven winners which will make them a dangerous proposition.

“We cant’s afford another slip up, we go back to the drawing board analyse our mistakes from the first match and we just work very hard to get our campaign back on track, for us the tournament is starting from tomorrow against Hekari,” Tagawa insisted.

Hekari will ride the wave of support coming from the stands at Sir John Guise Stadium and the hometown favourites will also take plenty of encouragement from their fighting performance against Eastern Suburbs.

Jerry Allen is well aware of what’s at stake for his side and he is adamant the Papua New Guinea giants will be up for it.

“For us it’s a must win match, we need to win to stay alive in the competition. They will be tough, as we know they are the defending Oceania champions. But we have advantage on our side because of the home crowd and we are going to come and play hard on Wednesday,” said the Hekari coach.

Additional Information

Galaxy FC vs Eastern Suburbs
Wednesday, 19 February
Sir John Guise Stadium
Port Moresby, KO: 12:00

Click on link for the live stream:

Match Officials
Referee: Timothy NIU (SOL)
Assistant Referee 1: Bernard MUTUKERA( SOL)
Assistant Referee 2: Johnny NIABO (SOL)
Fourth Official: Ben AUKWAI (SOL)

Galaxy FC  – 1. Seiloni IARUEL,  3. Diego  MAXIMO, 4. Moli VUTI, 5. Joseph IARUEL, 6. Ignace YAMACK, 7. Gagame FENI, 9. Terence CARTER, 10. Roberson DOS SANTOS RIBIERO, 11. Bong KALO, 14. Henry NAMATAK, 15. Alphonsee LENCY,  17. Nelson SALE, 18. Barry MANSALE,  20. Selwyn VATU, 21. Ruben FRANK,  22. Malakai MAKITO, 23. Eddison STEPHEN, 24. Kensi TANGIS
Head Coach – Batram SURI (Vanuatu)

Eastern Suburbs AFC – 1. Danyon DRAKE, 3. Tyler LISSETTE, 4. Kelvin KALUA, 5. Alec SOLOMONS,  6. Adam THOMAS,  7. Michael BUILT,  8. Adam THURSTON, 9. Martin BUENO, 10. Reid DRAKE,  12. Kingsley SINCLAIR, 14. Leon VAN DEN HOVEN,  15. Stafford DOWLING, 16. Christian GRAY, 18. Matthew PALMER, 20. Jake MECHELL, 21. Ryan VERNEY, 23. Campbell STRONG,  25. Mackenzie WAITE,  27. Jade MESIAS
Head Coach – Tony READINGS (England)

Hienghene Sport vs Hekari United
Wednesady, 19 February
Sir John Guise Stadium
Port Moresby, KO: 15:00

Click on link for the live stream:

Match Officials
Referee: Deepak RAJ (FIJ)
Assistant Referee 1: Avinesh NARAYAN (FIJ(
Assistant Referee 2: Folio MOEAKI (TGA)
Fourth Official: Veer SINGH (FIJ)

Hienghene Sport – 1. Rocky NYIKEINE,  4. Bruno HYANEM, 5. Jordan DINET, 6. Cedrick SANSOT,  10. Miguel KAYARA, 11. Bertrand KAI, 12. Amy Antoine ROINE,  13. Roy KAYARA, 14. Gianny KAYARA, 17. Rayan OUE, 19. Joseph ATHALE, 2o. Georgy BAMY, 22. Jean Luc DECOIRE, 23. Nelson KAI,  25. Georges WAKANUMUNE, 27.  Emile BEARUNE, 30. Yvanoe BAMY, 31. Jacques NYIKEINE
Head Coach – Felix TAGAWA (New Caledonia)

Hekari United – 2. Daniel JOE,  3. Otto KUSUNAN, 4. Erick JOE,  6. Junior DAVID, 7. Langarap SAMOL,  8. Michael FOSTER,  9. Ati KEPO, 10. Kolu KEPO,  11. Vinicius REIS KRYZOZUN, 12. David MUTA, 13. Vito LALOATA, 15. Wilson GIASUAU, 16. Nathan JAMES,  19. Koriak UPAIGA, 20, Ishmael POLE,  21. Patrick AISA,  24. Vanya MALAGIAN,  30. Dave TOMARE,
Head Coach – Jerry ALLEN (Solomon Islands)

To view the results, match schedule and latest news for the OFC Champions League 2020: Click Here



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