12 Feb 2015

Sport: Fiji U20s realistic about World Cup challenge

11:45 am on 12 February 2015

The Fiji Under 20s football coach Frank Farina says it's important to be realistic about the team's chances at the upcoming World Cup.

The first-time Oceania qualifiers will face European champions Germany in their first game, as well Uzbekistan and Honduras in the group stage.

Frank Farina replaced Ravinesh Kumar as head coach last month and says it's going to be a massive task playing against some of the world's footballing superpowers.

"Progress takes time, as you can appreciate, but the analogy I'll use is it's like a baby: When the baby is born it doesn't get up sprinting straight away - it has to learn to crawl, learn to walk and then learn to run. We're in the baby stage at the moment [and] we have to be realistic about it. It's a great adventure that they're beginning on - we're still babies when it comes to the rest of the world, outside of Oceania. It's just going to be a great learning experience for these players and I think for Fiji Football in general. We have to embrace it and hopefully a lot of things will be learnt, without too many painful lessons."

The Fiji team heads overseas on Friday for matches against Myanmar, Uzbekistan and three games in Malaysia.