By ISAAC LIRI
PORT Moresby Soccer Association in partnership with the NCD Governor Powes Parkop are putting their hands up to host the reconvened Melanesia Cup next year.
The reviving of this football concept will include Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Fiji, Vanuatu and New Caledonia.
PMSA senior vice-president Joseph Ealedona, pictured, said leaders of the Melanesian Spearhead Group approved the revival of the regional football tournament in 2016 after it stopped 18 years ago.
The tournament was last played in 2000 using a round-robin format involving every team playing each other once at one location.
Following the MSG Sports Committees meeting recently in Vanuatu, Ealedona says PNG and Solomon Islands would take the lead to implement and see that the tournament was revived.
Ealedona said former PNG Football Association president David Chung initiated discussions to collaborate with the PNG Sports Foundation and the MSG Secretariat for the revival.
Ealedona thanked current Foreign Affairs Secretary Barbara Age for her support for the project while a senior executive in the MSG Secretariat.
PNGFA acting-president and PMSA boss John Wesley Gonjuan will have further discussions with the Oceania Football Confederation and Fifa in Russia when the World Cup kicks off on Friday morning (PNG time) for the tournament to be formally sanctioned by OFC and Fifa.
“Back then the idea was that OFC didn’t want football to be a regional thing for Melanesians alone because the Melanesian Cup gained so much popularity and promoted one particular region only in the region it was eventually done away with,” Ealedona said.
By ISAAC LIRI