Members of the All Whites remain positive about the future of New Zealand football despite the heartbreak of losing their FIFA World Cup play-off against Costa Rica.
Goalkeeper Oli Sail (26) says: “I’m very proud of the group and we way we fought back.”
Sail said he had hardly touched the ball in 90 minutes, evidence of how the game was played.
“I was never under siege,” he said. “Their ‘keeper was super busy and they were constantly clearing half-chances out of their area.”
Sail said he thought the decision that saw Chris Wood’s ‘goal’ disallowed was “so soft”.
“Garbs (Matt Garbett) tried to keep his feet and they both hit the ground. For me, it’s never a foul.”
About the Costa Rica goal, Sail said: “To go down so early is clearly very disappointing but (we had) the courage and resilience to fight back, and to take the game to them”
Liberato Cacace (21) says: “The future is bright for New Zealand football.”
In his post-match interview, Cacace said the young All Whites team had a chance to create history but he thought emotions had got the better of the team early in the game, when New Zealand conceded the only goal of the game.
He said he had mixed feelings about the game, being disappointed at the result but “proud we worked our socks off.”
He said the red card “hurt us a lot” but the team had reacted well to the refereeing decisions that didn’t go their way.