Oceania Football Confederation (OFC, for its acronym in English according to ABBREVIATIONFINDER.ORG). One of FIFA’s six continental confederations, made up of Papua New Guinea, New Zealand and island nations such as Tonga, Fiji and other Pacific island nations. It promotes the game in Oceania and allows member nations to qualify for the FIFA World Cup, even though it is the only federation without direct quota to it.
Of the six confederations around the world, the OFC is by far the smallest and is made up mainly of island nations, where soccer is not the most popular sport. Consequently, OFC has little influence in the world of football in general, either in terms of international competition or as a source of players for high-profile club competitions. In 2006, OFC’s largest and most successful nation, Australia, left to join the Asian Football Confederation, leaving New Zealand as the largest federation within OFC. Australia’s departure also left the OFC without a national professional league in any of its nations.
The idea of a confederation for the Pacific was first raised in 1964, when everyone associated with the world of soccer was in Tokyo for the Olympics. Three gentlemen discussed the idea and set in motion the formation of what would become the OFC. Their names were: Sir Stanley Rous, then president of FIFA, Jim Bayutti of the Australian Football Federation and Sid Guppy, president of the New Zealand Football Association.
The discussion came after a decision by the Asian Football Confederation, which had been formed only ten years earlier, not to accept the same for Australia or New Zealand for membership. This was what laid the groundwork and gave the impetus for the crucial discussions in Tokyo.
Charles “Charlie” Dempsey is considered the “father of the OFC,” having played a key role in the establishment of the Confederacy and continued in leadership roles. After initial discussions in Tokyo, Dempsey was approached to work with Jim Bayutti to gather the necessary founding documents and gain support from around the world in hopes that they would receive a favorable reception at the next two FIFA Congress. years later.
In 1966, FIFA officially approved the proposal and the Oceania Football Confederation was officially born. The founding members were Australia, Fiji, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea. New Caledonia was also heavily involved in the process, but could only be a provisional member, as the territory did not have sporting autonomy from France at the time.
The first OFC congress was held in 1968 and the delegates – in response to the proposal presented by Australia and New Zealand – agreed that Sir William Walkley and Ian McAndrew should be appointed president and secretary-treasurer, respectively. They were both from Australia. Sir William’s opening speech at the 1968 congress called on all nations to work together for the development of soccer in the South Pacific.
Soccer in the Pacific got a big boost when a million dollar plan was unveiled to develop soccer stars of the future in a purpose-built facility at one of New Zealand’s most famous rugby venues. The Charles J. Dempsey Soccer Academy was built at Mount Smart Stadium at a cost of US $ 1.2 million. The specially designed facility, completed in 1999, provides training, arbitration and administrative services for the 11 member associations of the OFC. Since then, it has accommodated a variety of teams from across the region, particularly age-matched player groups as the OFC focuses on improving youth soccer standards. With the support of the world body, OFC has acted swiftly on many levels, and will continue to do so in the future. All member associations have fully functional and staffed offices and are working tirelessly to develop football in their respective regions. OFC has relaunched competitions such as the OFC Nations Cup and the O-League and embraced the new world of sponsorship and television.
In the coming years OFC will continue its efforts to improve the level of soccer throughout Oceania, both on and off the field. Like all development work, most of what OFC does not make headlines, but without the work of the confederation the players and fans from member countries do not have the framework in which to practice their skills. and enjoy your soccer.
- Cook islands
- Solomon Islands
- New caledonia
- New Zealand
- Papua New Guinea
- French polynesia
- American Samoa
- OFC Nations Cup
- OFC U-20 Championship
- OFC U-17 Championship
- Oceania Beach Soccer Championship
- OFC Futsal Championship
- Wantok Cup
- OFC Women’s Championship
- OFC U-20 Women’s Championship
- OFC U-17 Women’s Championship
- OFC Champions League
- OFC Cup