Tahiti scored 10 goals in the first half and 20 times after the break against the team ranked 222 in the Elo world rankings.
One more strike would have equalled the record set in 2001 when Australia beat American Samoa 31-0 in a World Cup qualifier, although Tahiti did set a record for the biggest soccer win in Pacific Games history.
The first goal of the one-sided contest was scored after five minutes by Michel Maihi (TAH), who went on to joint top score with Fred Tissot (TAH) on five goals each. Maihi said after the game that his opening strike was unintentional and he had planned to cross the ball.
As the challenge facing the Micronesians became apparent, the Papua New Guinean crowd began supporting the underdogs and nicknamed their standout No10 player Roger Nakasone (FSM) “Messi” after Argentine superstar Lionel.
One of the spectators, Mac Yeweh, believed the Micronesians suffered as a result of the height difference between their players and the Tahitians.
“The game was probably unfair because they are relatively shorter than anyone else. And the goalkeepers did not look very well trained,” Yeweh said.
The fan believed Micronesia’s lack of international experience – this was their first appearance in the Pacific Games soccer tournament – also counted against them.
“As first timers Micronesia should have been in a different pool because I think Tahiti have better facilities than Micronesia. They should have put them in a pool of equal standards to their country, ” Yeweh said.
Tahiti coach Patrice Flaccadori (TAH) said the first match of a tournament was “never easy”, although he admitted that his opponents were not playing at a “high level”.
“The topics we discussed today were to be good in defence, how to react when losing the ball and to score a lot of goals,” Flaccadori said.
At the end of the match, the Tahiti team performed their traditional war cry in front of the defeated Federated States of Micronesia players.
The Micronesians will be aiming to bounce back in their next match against Fiji at 10:00 on Sunday, while Tahiti take on Vanuatu the same day.