For Team Wellington and the neutrals, at least, the ISPS Handa Premiership final was a thrilling game — but we want to share three of our favourite moments from grand final day at Albany’s QBE Stadium.
Team Wellington took home the trophy after beating Auckland City 4-2 but here’s what you might have missed …
Top moment 1
Before the premiership trophy was handed to Team Wellington, a special presentation was made, naming Team Wellington’s Andy Nevin as the Man of the Match.
He was presented with the Steve Sumner Trophy, awarded since 2018 to recognise the player of the day. More special was that Nevin received the trophy from the late All White skipper’s grandson Beckett (main photo), there to watch the game with Carl Sumner, son of Steve.
The presentation brought together different generations of footballer and helped ensure we continue to honour the memory of Sumner, who led New Zealand to the FIFA World Cup in 1982, won the national league five times (and a record six Chatham Cups).
Top moment 2
Before the match, a special guest of NZ Football stepped onto the turf to soak up pre-game atmosphere. The VIP guest was Arthur Egan, legendary member of the backroom staff for a number of national squads and Auckland City for whom he remains a club ambassador.
Egan, a Life Member of NZ Football, is as enthusiastic about football now, as ever.
Top moment 3
They say you’ve watched a well-managed game when you barely notice the referee. So top marks to Matthew Conger who had to deal with some game-changing decisions as the man in the middle. He was well supported by assistants Mark Rule and Nick Waldron, and fourth official Edward Cook.
We tip our hat to the officials who helped make it a grand final to remember!
Thanks – let’s do it again!
Friends of Football thanks those members and supporters who enjoyed the match from their corporate box, high in the main stand. We had a great afternoon. If you want to join Friends of Football and be part of our future events, click here.