Papua New Guinea misses March’s FIFA matches window; the only big OFC member to not play

The Papua New Guinea national football team, also known as the Kapuls, has had a tumultuous history over the years. Despite being one of the big names in the Oceania Football Confederation, the team has been plagued by a number of issues that have prevented it from reaching its full potential.

Unfortunately, the Kapuls were the only ‘big OFC’ member to not be active in the last FIFA friendly window. This is a major concern for the team, as it could potentially impact their ranking and standing within the region. From the 11 members of the Oceania Football Confederation, less than the bottom-ranked four nations (American Samoa, Cook Islands, Samoa and Tonga), Papua New Guinea was the only national team to not play any matches this March.

Meanwhile, other teams in the region, including New Zealand, New Caledonia, and Tahiti, were actively playing friendly matches. New Zealand even had two friendly matches against China, while New Caledonia and Tahiti played each other twice. The Tri-Nations friendly tournament had the other three nations of the top-seven teams in the region, Vanuatu, Fiji, and Solomon Islands.

The Papua New Guinea Football Federation seems to continue in a mess as a number of problems continue to happen in the football of the country. These issues range from a lack of funding to poor infrastructure and coaching. In addition, amateur mistakes were made by the local football entity like missing the deadline to issue the list of U-17 national for the U-17 OFC Championship.

Kapuls in 2022 MSG Prime Minister Cup – SPG Prime Minister Cup Media

Despite these challenges, the Kapuls have managed to make some notable achievements in recent years. They reached the final of the 2016 OFC Nations Cup, which was held in Papua New Guinea, but lost to New Zealand. This was a significant milestone for the team, as it was the first time they had reached the final of a major international tournament. Also Papua New Guinea managed to win the last edition of the MSG Prime Minister Cup last year held in Vanuatu.

In conclusion, the Papua New Guinea national football team has a lot of potential, but they need the support of their football federation and the government to succeed. The team’s absence from the recent FIFA friendly window is concerning, and it remains to be seen what steps the football federation will take to address the issues that have been holding the Kapuls and local football back.


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