Justus to name final squad by July 30

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BY ROMULUS HUTA

THE national women’s soccer head coach will name her final team on July 30 for the preliminary qualifiers for the OFC Women’s Nations Cup.

Diane Justus told SunSPORTS yesterday that the first trimming of the 30-woman squad will take place on July 5 and followed by the final squad on July 30.

This is three weeks ahead of the qualifiers which will take in Lautoka, Fiji from August 25 to 31 which will see Solomon Islands, hosts Fiji, American Samoa and Vanuatu will compete to progress from the into the main draw of the OFC Women’s Nations Cup.

The main draw and the 11th edition of Oceania’s premier women’s competition will run in Noumea, New Caledonia from November 18 to December 1.

Justus said a series have been planned prior to the first and the final trim-down.

“Series of friendly matches are planned prior to the first and final trimmings.

“U15 boys teams from Marist and other clubs will be utilised in the planned matches.”

Justus added despite naming the training squad, the door is still open for potential ones to come in.

“The women’s league is currently underway and we are closely monitoring squad players who are playing for their various clubs.

“If any new outstanding players are seen, they will be considered to replace those already in the squad and ones who are not committed and under perform.

“The squad is aware of this challenge and so are the clubs,” she said.

Meanwhile, the qualifying competition is important for Solomon Islands where a top place finish will guarantee a spot in Group B of the OFC Women’s Nations Cup alongside defending champion New Zealand, Cook Islands and Tonga.

In Pool are New Caledonia, Papua New Guinea, Samoa and Tahiti.

The winner of the OFC Women’s Nations Cup earns double advantage for the 2019 FIFA World Cup in France and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, respectively.

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