National body revamps its high performance team with three appointments

posted in: Coaching News, News

New Zealand Football have appointed a new General Manager of High Performance and recruited former internationals Ryan Nelsen and Kirsty Yallop to advise them.

Keir Hansen.

Keir Hansen will join the national body in March, taking responsibility for overseeing the national teams and NZF’s high-performance programme.

He joins from Netball New Zealand where was Head of High Performance for seven years, leading the programme that saw the Silver Ferns win the Netball World Cup in 2019.

He was previously the National Strength and Conditioning Manager with High Performance Sport NZ, and he held strength and conditioning roles with UK rugby club Worcester RFC (2006-11) and the NZ Warriors rugby league club (2000-06).

Announcing the appointment, NZF said former All White Ryan Nelsen (45) and Football Fern Kirsty Yallop (36) would join its High Performance and Player Welfare Committee, “bringing their elite level professional football expertise to the organisation.”

Nelsen captained the All Whites at the 2010 FIFA World Cup and won 49 caps. He made more than 250 appearances in the English Premier League and in the United States’ MLS.

Kirsty Yallop.

Main photo: 2010 World Cup star Ryan Nelsen will help New Zealand Football’s high-performance programme. Photo: Shane Wenzlick / Phototek.

Yallop played 104 times for New Zealand, going to two FIFA Women’s World Cups and three Olympic Games. She played professionally in Australia, Norway, Sweden and in the United States.

Hansen replaces Gareth Jennings who left the role in mid-2022 after nine months in the job.

READ MORE: Jennings to leave high performance role >>>>

Pragnell: ‘We have an ambitious programme lined up …’

NZF Chief Executive Andrew Pragnell said:

“Keir brings a wealth of experience to the position from other leading New Zealand sporting organisations.

“He understands the landscape of operating high-performance sides in Aotearoa and the importance of alignment across the organisation and national teams.

“We have an ambitious programme lined up for our national teams and we believe Keir is perfectly placed to bring it to fruition.

“As an organisation, we have been very keen to take advantage of the wealth of experience our former national team players have so are really pleased to appoint Kirsty and Ryan to our High Performance and Player Welfare Committee.

“The High Performance and Player Welfare Committee plays a crucial role in guiding what we do in the high-performance space and Kirsty and Ryan’s knowledge and lived experience here will be invaluable.”

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