After the FIFA OFC World Cup Qualifiers, ten Solomon Islanders players went to Australia for a trial in search of a professional contract – Ali Mekawir even signed with Adelaide City.
Raphael Lea’i was expected to be with the other players to hold a trial but had to return to the Solomon Islands for personal reasons – the news was confirmed by his agent on talks to Oceania Football Center.
Raphael Lea’i is still likely to go overseas after an impressive performance in the last matches of Solomon Islands national team. The youngster scored four goals in the FIFA OFC World Cup.
Currently, the focus of SIFF and Basi Futebol – agency that is facilitating the trials in Australia and also manages Lea’i’s career – is on the ten national team players currently in Australia. Recently, national team head coach Felipe Vega-Arango said Lea’i does not need trials because he already proved himself in the last national team matches.