New Zealand again win U-19 football championship

New Zealand U-19 football players celebrate victory in OFC Championship Photo: Facebook Oceania Football Confederation

New Zealand have won the OFC Under-19 Championship 2022 after a 3-0 win over Fiji at Stade Pater in Papeete, Tahiti.

The victory gave the Junior All Whites their eighth title.

It was New Zealand who started strongest, Colloty looking a threat from the start. Fiji goalkeeper Aydin Mustahib pulled off a fine reaction save to deny the New Zealand striker after 10 minutes before Colloty blazed over from close range minutes later.

But Colloty soon had the goal his performance deserved, heading home Oliver Fay’s perfect cross for 1-0.

A few minutes later and the striker secured his second to make it 2-0. Fay was again the provider, this time Colloty taking a controlling touch on his head before nodding a tidy finish over Mustahib.

Colloty’s brace ensured he and teammate Kian Donkers will share the Golden Boot award with nine goals each.

Fiji came out firing in the second half and nearly became the first team to score past New Zealand at this tournament.

However, Lachlan Lal could only hit the post from close range after his tireless work earned a shooting opportunity.

Melvin Mani and Nabil Begg then tested New Zealand stopper Henry Gray, as Fiji put in a much-improved second-half display.

Shortly after rattling the crossbar from close range, Herdman sealed the victory, hitting a powerful strike from range which beat Mustahib to ensure New Zealand defended their title from 2018.

New Zealand have won the last five OFC Under-19 Championships they have entered.

The only blemish is the 2014 edition, which they did not enter and was won by Fiji.

Both teams will now turn their attention to the FIFA Under-20 World Cup in Indonesia next year.