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New Zealand national football team

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Nickname(s)  All Whites
Top scorer  Vaughan Coveny (28)
FIFA code  NZL
Manager  Anthony Hudson
Head coach  Anthony Hudson
Most caps  Ivan Vicelich (88)
Home stadium  Westpac Stadium
Founded  1891
Captain  Winston Reid

Current  111 2 (9 February 2017)
Association  New Zealand Football (NZF)
Confederation  Oceania Football Confederation (Oceania)
Arenas/Stadiums  Wellington Regional Stadium, North Harbour Stadium

The New Zealand national football team represents New Zealand in international association football. The team is controlled by the governing body for football in New Zealand New Zealand Football (NZF), which is currently a member of the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC). The team's official nickname is the All Whites, being one of many national team nicknames related to the All Blacks.

Contents

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New Zealand is a five-time OFC champion. The team represented New Zealand at the FIFA World Cup tournaments in 1982 and 2010, and the FIFA Confederations Cup tournaments in 1999, 2003 and 2009.

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Because most New Zealand football clubs are semi-professional rather than fully professional, most top New Zealand footballers play abroad for clubs in Europe, the United States, Canada and in the Australian A-League.

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Early years

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New Zealand's first international football match was played in Dunedin at the old Caledonian Ground on 23 July 1904 against a team representing New South Wales. New Zealand lost by the game's only goal, but drew with the same team 3–3 in a game at Athletic Park, Wellington seven days later. The following year the team played a Wellington representative side on 10 June before embarking on a tour of Australia, during which they played eleven representative sides, including three "test matches" against New South Wales. Of these three matches they won one, lost one, and drew one.

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A New Zealand national team did not play again until 1921, when New Zealand played three official full internationals against Australia, played at Carisbrook in Dunedin, Athletic Park in Wellington, and Auckland Domain. The results were two 3–1 wins to New Zealand and a 1–1 draw in Wellington.

Recent success

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Since the 1990s, United States college soccer has played a significant role in the development of New Zealand players. This influence began when former Scotland international Bobby Clark returned to the U.S. after his 1994–96 stint as New Zealand head coach to take the head coaching job at Stanford University (he now holds the same position at Notre Dame). Clark began recruiting in New Zealand, and former New Zealand national players Ryan Nelsen and Simon Elliott played for him at Stanford. The trend that Clark started has continued to the present; more than two dozen New Zealanders are now playing for NCAA Division I men's programs in the U.S. A common next step in these players' career paths is a stint in Major League Soccer; ESPNsoccernet journalist Brent Latham speculated in a March 2010 story that New Zealand's 2010 FIFA World Cup squad could have more MLS players than the U.S. squad. However, Latham's speculation did not prove true, as only one MLS player made the New Zealand squad for the World Cup.

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New Zealand formerly competed against Australia for top honours in the OFC. However, after Australia left to join the AFC in 2006, New Zealand were left as the only seeded team in the OFC.

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New Zealand qualified for the 2010 FIFA World Cup though exited the competition after the first round despite being the only team not to lose a game during the tournament. The tournament also featured one of New Zealand's most notable results, a 1–1 draw with the then world champions Italy. New Zealand drew their other two pool games with Slovakia and Paraguay and inevitably finished above Italy, who placed last, in the group. New Zealand drew all three games and finished third in their group.

Anthony Hudson era

In August 2014, Anthony Hudson was appointed manager of the All Whites. Although Hudson's first game in charge of the national team was a 3–1 defeat away to Uzbekistan in September 2014, the All Whites have been unbeaten since March 2015, conceding only two goals in this period, which includes defeating Oman, who were ranked 67 places higher at 92nd place in the FIFA World Rankings, in a 1–0 victory.

The All Whites went on to win the 2016 OFC Nations Cup, winning all 5 matches and conceding only 1 goal, from a penalty, in the process. New Zealand’s victory sees them crowned Oceania champions making New Zealand the most successful national team in the competition's history, having won the tournament five times, and also sees them qualify for the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup in Russia.

Supporters

The supporters of the New Zealand national team are known as the 'White Noise', a play on the All Whites nickname.

Rivalries

New Zealand's long time rivals are Trans-Tasman neighbors Australia. The two teams' history dates back to 1922, where they first met in both their international debuts. The rivalry between the Socceroos (Australia) and the All Whites (New Zealand) is part of a wider friendly rivalry between the geographical neighbours Australia and New Zealand, which applies not only to sport but to the culture of the two countries. The rivalry was intensified when Australia and New Zealand were both members of the OFC, regularly competing in OFC Nations Cup finals and in FIFA World Cup qualifications, where only one team from the OFC progressed to the World Cup. Since Australia left the OFC to join the AFC in 2006, competition between the two teams has been less frequent. However, the rivalry between the two teams is still strong, with the occasional match receiving much media and public attention. The rivalry extends to club football, with New Zealand's only fully professional team, the Wellington Phoenix, playing in the Australian A-League.

Players

For all past and present players who have appeared for the national team, see New Zealand national team players.

Current squad

The following players were called up for the World Cup qualifiers against Fiji on 25 and 28 March.
Caps and goals updated as of 25 March 2017 after the game against Fiji.

Recent call-ups

The following players have also been called up to represent New Zealand in the last 12 months:

Results and fixtures

For all past match results of the national team, see the team's 1922–69 results page, 1970–99 results page and 2000–present results page.

Top goalscorers

Players in bold still active at international level.

Competitive record

For the all-time record of the national team against opposing nations, see the team's all-time record page.

OFC Nations Cup

*Denotes draws include knockout matches decided on penalty kicks.

References

New Zealand national football team Wikipedia


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