Words: ACFC Media
Tuesday 26 February 2019
HONIARA, Solomon Islands – Auckland City FC’s players and staff have taken time out of their OFC Champions League schedule to make an historic visit to Honiara High School.
Football is a sport loved by the many Solomon Islanders especially students all around the Island nation.
NEWS - #NavyBlues visit Honiara High School— Auckland City FC (@AucklandCity_FC) February 25, 2019
Micah Lea'alafa returns to his old school with his #NavyBlues team-mates to gift football gear & balls to students and teachers ahead of the Tupapa Maraerenga #OFCCL clash.
Auckland City FC board member and spokesman Colin Cook said a visit to a school well known for producing some of the Solomon Islands greatest football players was too good to miss.
“We’re honoured to be received by Honiara High School particularly because of the connection with Micah Lea’alafa and many other Solomon Island international footballers.
“Everyone knows the passion and love for the game that exists in this country and it’s important for us as a club to connect with the locals.
“George Suri, Henry Fa’arodo, David Firisua, Micah, Alick Maemae, Nelson Sale – all of these players have made a major impact in the game in the Pacific and in New Zealand.
“By gifting footballer gear and balls to the school we are trying to show our own appreciation for what the people of the Solomon Islands bring to the game of football.
“We’re delighted to be here and the hospitality and generous spirit of our hosts has been amazing,” he told www.aucklandcityfc.com.
Auckland City FC's Solomon Islands international Lea'alafa attended Honiara High School in 2011 and his success in the game is an inspiration to youngsters everywhere in the football-obsessed nation.
The visit took a dramatic turn when local warriors greeted the team with chants and powerful cultural display and welcome.
They were received onto school grounds and each member of the Auckland City FC delegation received a necklace.
Solomon Islands international and former Three Kings United midfielder Alex Waimora was on hand to witness the day and spoke highly of the day’s activities.
“This was a remarkable experience for the students and staff of Honiara High School to meet a top football team like Auckland City FC – it is not something that happens every day.
“There were a lot of positive vibes as the players took few minutes to kick around with the students and chat personally with them.
“It meant a lot for the students to be involved so closely in the kick-about and for the club to donate football gear and balls topped it off,” 24-year-old Waimora said.
The most poignant moment of the day belonged to graduate Lea'alafa who took the stage to impart his own powerful words of advice.
“I am happy to be here with my team-mates from Auckland City FC. The club has always had a good connection with the Solomon Islands and I feel happy we have given something to my old high school.
“My message to everyone is to believe in your potential and stay true to your faith in God and focus on achieving your goals, Lea’alafa said.
v Al Ahly, Tangier, Feb 1 2023, KO: 8pm local