Auckland City FC players took an off-the-field training on Monday and visited children at Chapuis area, near the Luganville Stadium in Santo.
They played football and share their experiences with the children and youth.
Midfielder Dylan Manickum encouraged the children to work hard and strive for excellence.
“ I play football in New Zealand. I started playing when I was nine years old and I played futsal and I develop my football skills from there and eventually got here to play in this Champions League,” he said.
“ It takes years and years of practice and if you keep practicing and work hard, you guys can get there too.”
The Navy Blues’ commitment to Oceania football has been in the club’s DNA since it first began and when invited to Chapuis by Gary Medina were enthusiastic.
General Manager Gordon Watson said the visit was arranged weeks in advance of departure to Vanuatu and kept up the club’s positive reputation in the region.
“Gary spoke with us very early on in the lead-up to the OFC Champions League about a visitation and Albert Riera and the squad were only too happy to do so,” said Watson.
“Many of our players are parents themselves and understand the need for children to have role models so we got to surface that sense of responsibility and emotion in our squad today.”
Head Coach Albert Riera was happy for the community and the effort that they put in to welcome the team.
Riera reminded the children to do what they like and be humble about it.
“It’s good to see the initiative from you, no matter what you do you may like football, you may like futsal you do what you like, you put a lot of effort in it, you humbly listen to your coach I’m sure you have a bright career,” he said.
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