Clegg and Nathan included in Young Ferns squad for U-17 Women’s World Cup

posted in: News

Coach Leon Birnie has named a 21-player squad to represent New Zealand at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in India in October.

The Young Ferns side includes two players who played in August’s FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Costa Rica — Auckland United pair Milly Clegg and Ruby Nathan.

Leon Birnie. Photo: Shane Wenzlick / Phototek

Main photo: Milly Clegg at the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Costa Rica.

“We’ll be calling on the experiences these two had in Costa Rica, especially ahead of the team’s first game against Chile,” Birnie says.

“For the rest of the team, it will be their first experience of pulling on the Fern in a competitive fixture, which will be an incredible moment for them.”

The team departs for India on Friday September 30.

Birnie: ‘Players set goal to get out of their group’

Birnie told NZ Football’s website:

“This is a talented squad with good depth across all positions, and we’re really excited to see them make their mark on the world stage.”

There are two goals for the team this tournament, he says.

“Our purpose with this age group is to develop players and enable them to get experience against some of the best in the world in their age group.

“This will help them to develop so that in the future they can make that step up to the U-20s and Ford Football Ferns.

“The second goal, that the players have identified for themselves, is to get out of the group and be the second ever New Zealand team to progress beyond the group stage at this tournament.”

The squad

(club, home federation, school)

Aimee Danieli; Auckland United FC; NRF; Epsom Girls Grammar School
Alexis Cook; Northern Rovers FC ; NRF; Westlake Girls High School
Charlotte Eagle; Melville United AFC; WaiBoP; Hamilton Girls High
Charlotte Mortlock; Cashmere Technical; Mainland; Burnside High School
Ella McMillan; Phoenix Academy; Capital; AUT
Ella McCann; FC Nelson; Mainland; Waimea College
Emily (Milly) Clegg; Auckland United FC; NRF; Mount Albert Grammar
Helena Errington; Western Suburbs; Capital; Wellington Girls College
Kiara Bercelli; Alamein FC; Mainland; Te Kura
Lara Smith; Wellington United; Capital; Wellington Girls College
Lara Colpi; Western Springs AFC; NRF; Epsom Girls Grammar School
Madeleine Iro; Cashmere Technical; Mainland; Christchurch Girls High School
Manaia Elliott; Melville United AFC; WaiBoP; St Peters Cambridge
Marie Green; Ellerslie AFC; NRF; Baradene College
Megan Simpson; Nomads United AFC; Mainland; St Andrews College
Olivia Ingham; Phoenix Academy; Capital; Onslow College
Olivia Page; Eastern Suburbs AFC; NRF; Baradene College
Rebekah Trewhitt; PN Marist FC; Central; St Peters College PN
Ruby Nathan; Auckland United FC; NRF; Baradene College
Suya Hearing; Northern Rovers FC; NRF; Rangitoto College
Zoe Benson; Eastern Suburbs AFC; NRF; Macleans College

About the tournament

The FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup takes place from October 11-30 in India .

The Young Football Ferns were nominated to be Oceania Football Confederation’s representatives at this World Cup after the Oceania qualifiers could not take place due to the effects of the COVID pandemic.

In 2018, the Young Football Ferns created history when they were the first New Zealand national team to bring home a medal at a FIFA event, when they won the bronze medal at the U-17 Women’s World Cup in Uruguay.

The Young Football Ferns games will be broadcast on Sky Sport NZ.


Chile v New Zealand
Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Margao
Wednesday October 12, 10am (NZT)

New Zealand v Nigeria
Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Margao
Saturday October 15, 10am (NZT)

Germany v New Zealand
Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Margao
Tuesday October 18, 10am (NZT)

More football stories