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Player profile: Angela Sa’o (American Samoa)

Today we feature one of the most experienced members of the American Samoa squad.
Angela Sa’o
As the eldest American Samoa U-20 player, Angela Sa’o is focused on bringing unity to her younger teammates as they continue their preparations for the OFC U-20 Women’s Championship in January.
“If we play as one, we can do very well at this tournament,” says the 19-year-old midfielder.
“We need to play together and communicate well with one another.”
Within the current crop of U-20 players, Sa’o has a reputation for being the most powerful striker of the ball and is also regarded as an intelligent player with great vision.
“She is a good communicator with all of the players, great ball controller and her vision allows her to be a great distributor of the ball,” says Ruben Luvu, coach of the American Samoa women’s U-20 squad.
“Another great aspect about her is not only her attacking skills, but she is also a great defender. I trust in her to go on the attack because she can come back and defend equally well,” says Luvu.
A veteran of the 2007 South Pacific Games, Sa’o took part in all matches American Samoa played in at the senior competition. She has played football since the age of seven and cites her uncle Sione Ma’ae as her biggest influence.
“He took me everyday when I was young to the (Taputimu) field to play soccer and that’s how I started learning the game and loving it,” Sa’o recalled. “I’ve been playing ever since.”
Sa’o knows a thing or two about winning having played on championship teams at Leone High School and then claiming numerous titles with her club Black Roses in FFAS women’s 11-a-side and 5-a-side competitions. She has been at the core of those winning teams, alongside U-20 squad members Filiga and Meleane Ioapo.
Currently she is attending American Samoa Community College, majoring in Criminal Justice and hopes to one day play professional soccer.
Sa’o nominates former United States national team stalwart Mia Hamm as her footballing idol but doesn’t have her own sights on a career in the United States just yet, rather she is eyeing playing fields within her own hemisphere.
“I want to try out with a team in New Zealand because I have a lot of family members there,” she says.
On top of playing, Sa’o participated and received a certificate for participation at a FIFA-run referee course held in Pago Pago last year and has since been refereeing elementary games and trying out as an assistant referee in the ongoing FFAS National League.
Occupation: American Samoa Community College Student
Full Name: Angela Sa’o
Date of Birth: April 17, 1990
Place of Birth: American Samoa
Height: 5’5” (1.6 meters)
Position: Midfielder
Club: Black Roses
Number of years playing: 12
Favourite footballer: Mia Hamm (USA, retired)
2007 Samoa South Pacific Games’ American Samoa women’s national team member
2005 American Samoa Summer Youth League MVP
2006-2007 High School Varsity MVP (Leone HS)
Story courtesy FFAS Media

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