City's Oceania campaign starts with draw

Words: ACFC Media

Sunday 12 May 2024

Picture: Phototek

PAPEETE, Tahiti - Auckland City FC have kicked off their Oceania title defence with a tense 2-all draw against Fijian outfit Rewa FC in Sunday’s Group A clash played in stifling conditions at Stade Paea. 

Captain Cam Howieson led by example scoring one of the goals for his side as well as setting another one up for Ryan De Vries while Josiah Sela grabbed a brace at the other as the two sides were forced to settle for a share of the points.

Meanwhile Navy Blues custodian Conor Tracey, who made his debut for the club  in December 2017 in a 0-0 draw with Al-Ittihad in Dubai, has reached 100 games to equal the record for goalkeepers previously held by former All Whites stopper Ross Nicholson.

Liam Gillion came the closest to scoring forcing a good save from Isikeli Sevanaia at the near post during a slow first half in sapping heat and humidity in Tahiti.

The game sparked into life after the break with four goals scored inside twenty minutes

Howieson broke the deadlock finding the net after being set up by a Gerard Garriga header inside the box.

Rewa responded within less than ten minutes with two superbly taken strikes by Sela.

However, the reigning Oceania champions were back on level terms just minutes later as Howieson sent a perfectly timed through ball towards De Vries who flicked it past the Fijian keeper.

Gillion, who had been a constant threat throughout the game came close to a late winner flashing just wide before Howieson threatened with a close range effort in injury time as the Navy Blues poured forward searching for a winner.

But at the end of an entertaining and dramatic encounter the two sides have returned to their shades with a one point each to kick off their campaign.

In Sunday's other Group A clash Hekari United from Papua New Guinea have defeated their Melanesian rivals the Solomon Warriors 2-0.

Auckland City will next face Hekari United on Wednesday 10.00 (NZST) and you can follow their progress on FIFA+ live and free HERE.

Ends

MATCH RESULT
OFC CHAMPIONS LEAGUE GROUP A MD1
Sunday  12 May 2024
Rewa FC 2 : (Josia SELA 62' 65')
Auckland City FC 2 (Cam HOWIESON 50’, Ryan DE VRIES 67’) ’

HT: 0-0

AC: 1. Conor TRACEY (GK), 3. Adam MITCHELL, 4. Christian GRAY (22. Tong ZHOU 46’),  7. Cam HOWIESON, 8. Gerard GARRIGA, 9. Angus KILKOLLY, (Ryan DE VRIES 63’),  10. Dylan MANICKUM, 12. Regont MURATI, (27. Stipe UKICH 70’) 13. Nathan LOBO, (23 Alfie ROGERS 82’), 19. Liam GILLION (Joe LEE 82’), 25. Michael DEN HEIJER 

SUBS NOT USED: 24. Joe WALLIS (GK), 21 Adam BELL

COACH: Albert RIERA
ASSISTANT COACH: Ivan VICELICH
GK COACH: Enaut ZUBIKARAI
TECHNICAL: Adria CASALS
LOGISTICS: Rob HAYTER
PHYSIO: Matt PAYNE

CHATHAM CUP Rd3

Sun 16 June 2024,Hamilton Wanderers Kiwitea St, KO:2.00pm

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Table
Position P W D L F A Pts
1 BU11821301426
2 AC1081127825
3 WS12813311725
4 ES12813211225
5 AU12624211320
6 TC12624272720
7 BO12507192115
8 MN11425252214
9 EB12246132210
10 WR1223717299
11 MU12201012406
12 HW1212914325

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