Five things about NZ Football’s new women’s development manager

NZ Football’s new women’s development manager, Annalie Longo, brings a vast amount of experience and knowledge into the role.

Longo (30) has played 124 games for the Football Ferns, played in eight FIFA tournaments, has two W-League winners medals and lifted five national league titles.

She’s now been appointed as the national body’s women’s development manager, a key role ahead of the 2023 FIFA World Cup to be co-hosted in New Zealand and Australia.

Longo takes up the role on September 13, 2021, and will be based in Christchurch.

But what else do we know … or don’t know … about Longo.

Five things about Annalie Longo

Fact 1: She became New Zealand’s youngest senior football international when she made her Football Ferns debut on November 14, 2006, aged only 15. She’s the second-youngest player to represent any country at a FIFA World Cup.

Fact 2: When she was 15, she suggested ‘Football Ferns’ in a brainstorm to find a suitable name for the national team. It stuck, just like her own nickname which is ‘flea’.

Fact 3: Longo became the first player in the world to compete at World Cup tournaments for U-17, U-20, full international level as well as at the Olympic Games (represented New Zealand at London 2012 and Brazil 2016).

Fact 4: She began playing football when she was four, kicking balls around with her father Paul, while her brothers Jason and Julian played for Eden Football Club in Auckland. “He (Dad) enrolled me when Eden amalgamated with Mt. Roskill to become Three Kings United, and things have just gone on from there,” she told Jeremy Ruane in an early interview.

Fact 5: Longo admits to being a Manchester United fan, and once listed her favourite players as Christiano Ronaldo and Brazilian forward Marta, voted FIFA World Player of the Year six times.