National body aiming to stage home games for All Whites in September

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Football’s national administrators plan to give All Whites supporters the chance to see their heroes play on home soil in late 2022 – regardless of whether New Zealand have qualified for the FIFA World Cup Finals.

The September international window is being targeted as the opportunity to attract opponents for a couple of matches in New Zealand.

The plan is revealed in an interview by NZ Football chief executive Andrew Pragnell with NZ Herald football writer Michael Burgess.

“The cost and risk associated with home games has to be carefully calculated,” said Pragnell. “You need to balance those up pretty carefully and have an opposition that is going to be a big drawcard.

“If you get that equation wrong, history has shown it can be quite damaging. I’m really determined to get home games but not at the expense of financial mismanagement.

“I have confidence that New Zealand crowds will turn out to support our senior national teams against good opposition but you certainly need the right model.”

Options include teaming up with Australia to draw teams that play one game either side of the Tasman, and even staging a match between the All Whites and Socceroos.

Ideally, both New Zealand and Australia would have qualified for the World Cup finals, meaning the September internationals could be used as warm-up matches.

However, Pragnell says NZF is keen to stage internationals at home, regardless of New Zealand’s World Cup progress.

The All Whites have not played at home since November 2017 when they played a World Cup play-off tie against Peru in Wellington.

Since 2010, the All Whites have enjoyed only 12 home games, with only six against nations outside of the Oceania Confederation.

The All Whites’ 2022 fixture schedule

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