Sunday, July 14, 2024
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Sunday, July 14, 2024

    “VANUATU PLAYS WITH HEART”, Says New Zealand Head Coach, Darren Bazeley.

    Despite Vanuatu’s loss in the final match of the OFC Men’s Nations Cup 2024 tournament on home ground, New Zealand’s Head Coach described Vanuatu as playing “with heart.” More than 10,000 fans and supporters came to witness this important match.

    The two-week tournament hosted by Vanuatu on home ground concluded on Sunday weekend, as Vanuatu showed other island nations that they reached the final of the tournament against champions New Zealand.

    The team’s loss in this final boosted the morale of the team to look forward to other future tournaments.

    It took Vanuatu 51 years to reach a final stage of such a big tournament in Oceania, and it is also the first time the team has reached a final like this on home ground.

    New Zealand’s Head Coach, Darren Bazeley, said that this final was a tough game due to the crowd that day and it was the first time he was involved in a game with such a large crowd.

    “It was an exciting match because Vanuatu is a team that plays with their hearts, it was a challenging day but a good win on that day.

    “The boys have played many games in big stadiums with big crowds, but with this game, it was different because the Vanuatu crowd was behind Team Vanuatu and gave them confidence in the game. It was a good experience for everyone, and the atmosphere was just nice, but I am proud that we came out winners again, but it was a competitive game because Vanuatu played with heart,” said New Zealand’s head coach in an interview with OFC after the game.

    Vanuatu’s Head Coach, Julianao Schmeling, was a proud man when his boys advanced to the final and was happy when they came to play against New Zealand.

    “I am proud of the team because they managed the game for 90 minutes, but to compete with New Zealand I am very proud, but the nation of Vanuatu must be proud too.

    “Our struggle happened right when we received a red card in the game, we couldn’t manage, but by the end of the game I think everything was okay, and I am 100% sure that this team will grow more in the coming months,” said Coach Schmeling in an interview.

    He pointed out that they must plan well ahead for the next future tournaments.

    Team captain Brian Kaltak thanked everyone who managed to come and watch the game and support the team.

    “We made history when we reached the final, but this is not the end yet we will continue, but our hearts are with you, the fans, and we take this game as a positive sign to push us forward, as a team we will continue to move forward with you the fans with us,” said team captain Kaltak after the medal presentation ceremony.

    New Zealand’s captain, Liberato Cacace, told VBTC Sports that it was a good game, a good tournament, and he is proud of his boys because through them, they came back as champions.



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