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Solomon Islands National U17 team were inspired with a message of hope & unity, during a brief organized thanksgiving and send out service on Thursday, before their departure en route to Brazil for the FIFA under 17 World Cup.
Fr Jabes Akao from All Saints church, inspired the players and team officials, as they set focus to make history representing the country in the world stage.
“Through the challenges and criticisms, only to depress you individually as players, always remember you’re a team. Your preparations working together with your officials determine the spirit of unity and maintaining it going forward,” Fr. Akao told the team.
“You manage to reach this far despite the trials the team went through. Any grudges each of you still hold onto, don’t let it bring you down. Keep the unity as a team – there’s always hope in God.
The Oceania Football Confederation’s disciplinary committee disqualified the team earlier this year, however, that decision was overruled in an appeal in February, which later in May OFC took the case to the Court of Arbitration for Sports, which released its findings and the team was released to compete later in September.
Recently, the omission of a star player, Max Keana also brewed criticisms through social media by locals – but the team is urged to be adamant as they set focus ahead of the competition.
Parents and guidance representing the players also took the opportunity to show their support with uplifting words to the players and officials.
“The country is behind the team, as we all are, go make us proud,” a parent expressed.
The team will leave the country on Friday 18th departing at 2 pm.