The decision by the Oceania Football Confederation to move the PNG-Solomon Islands World Cup Qualifier from Lae to Port Moresby, has not gone down well with supporters in both the Momase and Highlands region.
Earlier in the year, the PNG Football Association had announced Lae as the venue for the match.
Lae has long been considered the spiritual home of football in the country. Indeed the current PNG champions, Lae City Dwellers are the latest batch of big football clubs to come out of that are.
In the past, clubs such as SOBOU and Unitech had provided the platform for some of the strongest sides to ever play in the country.
And it is no doubt disappointing for many of the People north of the capital, with social media abuzz. One fan calling for the resignation of the current PNG football administration. While others with more prudent statements, Looking at the would-be hosts capacity as a whole.
The reality is however, the poor condition of the pitch. Inspections done by the PNG National coach, Flemming Serritslev, had left him unsatisfied with it”s current status.
Calling it unsuitable for an international match of this magnitude.
The PNG Football Stadium will be the new host. A pitch built using FIFA Money for the Under 20 Women’s World Cup. A smaller capacity than the Sir John Guise Stadium but nonetheless suitable.
The match will be played on Tuesday the 13th of June, marked for a 3pm kick off.
And it is hopeful, that with enough hype and advertising leading up to the game, that there will be a much better attendance than the meagre 2000 which was seen in march during the PNG Tahiti qualifier.