The film follows the American Samoa soccer team -- FIFA’s* lowest ranked team for 17 years – which had not won a single competitive game and scored only twice in nearly two decades. Dutch coach Thomas Rongen takes on the daunting challenge of leading the team to the grueling 2014 World Cup Qualification matches with the hope of finally winning their first ever competitive match.
Rongen – a hyperactive, abrasive leader from the old school who had played professionally with soccer greats like George Best and Johann Cruyff – is completely unprepared for what greets him on the tiny island in the Pacific. In his own words, “this is by far the lowest standard of soccer I’ve ever seen.”
Rongen soon begins putting together the most important pieces of the American Samoan team: He brings back Nicky Salapu, the emotionally scarred goalkeeper who once gave up 31 goals in a match against Australia he convinces the team’s best player Ramin Ott, an American serviceman stationed 6,000 miles away to rejoin and finally, he promotes to the starting lineup Jaiyah Saelua, a member of Samoa’s third gender (the fa’fafine), who identifies as a woman and becomes the first transgender player ever to compete at an international level. It will take a miracle-maker or a madman to turn the team’s fortunes around – and in maverick Dutch coach Thomas Rongen the islanders somehow find both. Rongen has just one month to transform this disparate crew into a winning team. Along the way, he undergoes a remarkable epiphany and comes to terms with a family tragedy.