30 Nov 2011

Sport: New expectations for American Samoan football

10:50 am on 30 November 2011

The FIFA Development Officer for Oceania, Glenn Turner, says American Samoa's historic win last week will help elevate the game of football in the region.

American Samoa, the lowest-ranked of the 204 members of FIFA, had their first win at the international level in 31 games when they beat Tonga 2-1 at the Oceania qualifying tournament in Samoa.

Turner says the World media attention after that win shows that there are great opportunities in football for the smaller playing nations in the Pacific.

"Looking forward now, there's a new challenge for you because in the country there's a new expectation, they don't see American Samoa now going out and losing football matches. I think you've done a great job for football, a great job for your country, and also for your families."

Glenn Turner believes the new format for world cup qualification where the four bottom ranked teams from OFC play in the first stage, is good for small countries like American Samoa.