Double-debutants Madang FC and AS Central Sport might be making their debut this afternoon, but they have both added at least a couple of seasoned campaigners to bolster their squads.
Madang FC and AS Central Sport kicks off the opening match of Group B at 4 pm in Stade Numa Daly, Noumea.
Madang’s hopes of calling on some of the team’s former stars fell through after senior international and U-20 captain Felix Komolong couldn’t transfer from his New Zealand club.
However coach Francis Moyap believes the squad he has assembled has every opportunity to spring a surprise on any of their Group A opponents.
“The time is not right for us, but we’re here now and we’re looking forward to being here,” Moyap said.
“We’re ready. It’s a bunch of young boys about 90 per cent have never travelled, but we are here to play.”
For AS Central Sport it is an honour to be taking part in the OFC Champions League as well as an opportunity to prove themselves on the regional stage.
“It’s the first time Central has qualified for this event,” coach Cyril Klosek said.
“Our objective is first place in the group and qualification for the semi-finals. We’re not the favourites, but we’re capable.”
Madang FC: 1. Glen AGAT (GK), 3. Nigel MALAGIAN, 4. Don ANGONGI, 5. Langarap SAMOL, 6. Samuel KINI, 7. Maximillion SENGUM, 8. Solomon MAPAI, 9. Patrick AISA, 10. Eliuda POHEI, 11. Vanya MALAGIAN, 12. Darren STEVEN, 13. Hanson TOPIO, 14. Michael TOLE, 15. Vincent WAROI, 16. Papalau AWELE, 17. Jacob SABUA, 18. Stahl GUBAG, 19. Steven INIA, 20. Kusuga KOMOLONG (GK), 21. Maskulan PULUNG, 23. Leehan MANASEH (GK)