Portugal put Football Ferns on the rack with 5-0 drubbing in Hamilton

posted in: Football Ferns, News

New Zealand’s Football Ferns have crashed to a 5-0 defeat in their international friendly with Portugal at Hamilton’s FMG Stadium Waikato.

The game was set up, with two more fixtures against Argentina, to simulate the conditions of group play in the FIFA Women’s World Cup.

In that case, the Ferns’ hopes of making the knockout stages would now be looking forlorn.

READ MORE: Ferns coach Jitka Klimková: ‘We know we should be doing a better job’ >>>>

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Main photo: Portugese players celebrate going 4-0 ahead.

New Zealand coach Jitka Klimková went for experience, naming a starting line-up in which all her players had at least 20 caps, with the exception of young defender Kate Taylor who was making her sixth appearance but her first in the run-on side.

The Ferns got off to a promising start in the fifth minute when midfielder Olivia Chance latched onto a ball headed out of the Portugese area. Her shot from outside the box forced Portugal ‘keeper Patricia Morais into a good save.

Soon, the speed and movement of Portugal started to turn their game their way.

After a couple of promising attacks, Portugal took the lead. Lúcia Alves curled a cross into the box and Jessica Silva got to the ball, nodding it past ‘keeper Erin Nayler.

The Ferns responded almost immediately when captain Ali Riley sent striker Hannah Wilkinson into space and her pass into the box was met well by Gabi Rennie who hammered the ball into the net.

The celebrations were quickly ended by the assistant referee’s flag; Wilkinson had been offside.

Two minutes later, the Ferns created another chance when CJ Bott and Wilkinson combined to provide Chance with a shot that was blocked by Morais.

With the New Zealanders looking to get back into the game, they suffered a sucker punch six minutes before the break.

Portugal’s Jessica Silva got into the box and went down in a tackle by Taylor.

The referee went to VAR and pointed to the penalty spot.

Dolores Silva struck the penalty to Nayler’s right and despite the ‘keeper going the right way, she couldn’t get a hand to it.

Half-time statistics

(New Zealand / Portugal)

Shots: 2 / 5
Shots on target: 1 / 3
Possession: 35% / 65%
Passes: 141 / 272
Pass accuracy: 68% / 81%
Corners: 2 / 2
Offsides: 2 /1
Fouls: 7 / 3
Yellow cards: 0 / 1
Distance covered: 52.6km / 49.5km

A tough night for New Zealand goalkeeper Erin Nayler.

Klimková made a couple of half-time substitutions, introducing Paige Satchell and Meikayla Moore to the game.

However, it was Portugal who looked the most lively, and they stretched their lead to 3-0 when substitute Diana Silva got around a retreating Katie Bowen and crossed to Capeta who tucked the ball into the goal.

The Ferns made more changes; captain Riley and striker Wilkinson made way for Liz Anton and Grace Jale.

But Portugal were on fire, and increased their lead to 4-0 in the 68th minute when Telma Encarnação played in the unmarked Capeta for her second goal.

In the 79th minute, Diana Silva got down the right and was able to cross for Tatiano Pinto to head into the net from 12 metres.

Diana Silva almost added a sixth Portugese goal with six minutes to go when she shot just wide.

Substitute Catarina Amado should have done better when she misfired when on goal.

As the clock ran down, the New Zealanders looked tired and shell-shocked.

With a minute to go, Pinto should have scored her second, heading wide with the goal beckoning.

In the five minutes of stoppage time, the Ferns pushed forward as best they could with Bowen and Satchell urging teammates forward. But there was no way through; no consolation goal to give the spectators some hope.

It was a relief all round when the final whistle went.

A number of the New Zealand players looked clearly distressed at the warm-down, as coach Klimková gathered them together, addressing them as a group.

Full match statistics

(New Zealand / Portugal)

Shots: 5 / 15
Shots on target: 2 / 6
Possession: 41% / 59%
Passes: 371 / 529
Pass accuracy: 74% / 79%
Fouls: 12 / 4
Yellow cards: 1 / 1
Red cards: 0 / 0
Offsides: 3 /1
Corners: 4 / 4


Game played on Friday February 17, 2023

New Zealand 0
Portugal 5 (Jessica Silva 17′, Dolores Silva 42′ pen, Ana Capeta 63′, 69′, Tatiana Pinto 79′)

Match highlights


New Zealand

Erin Nayler, CJ Bott, Katie Bowen, Claudia Bunge (Meikayla Moore 46′), Ali Riley (captain) (Liz Anton 65′), Kate Taylor, Olivia Chance, Betsy Hassett, Malia Steinmetz (Daisy Cleverley 70′), Gabi Rennie (Paige Satchell, 46′), Hannah Wilkinson (Grace Jale 65′).

Subs not used: Mackenzie Barry, Indiah-Paige Riley, Brianna Edwards, Ava Collins, Michaela Foster, Murphy Sheaff, Grace Neville.

Head coach: Jitka Klimková.


CJ Bott (77′)

Portugal. Credit: SNFFA 


Patrícia Morais, Lúcia Alves, Sílvia Rebelo, Ana Seiça, Andreia Norton (Tatiana Pinto 46′), Dolores Silva (Fátima Pinto 46′), Vanessa Marques, Ana Borges (Catarina Amado 46′), Ana Capeta, Jéssica Silva (Diana Silva 46′), Telma Encarnação (Diana Gomes 77′).

Subs not used: Rute Costa, Inês Pereira, Carole Costa, Joana Marchão, Andreia Jacinto, Carolina Mendes, Kika Nazareth.

Head coach: Francisco Neto.


Ana Capeta (37′)


Game to be played on Monday February 20, 2023

New Zealand v Argentina (friendly)
FMG Stadium Waikato, Hamilton, 7pm

Game to be played on Thursday February 23, 2023

New Zealand v Argentina (friendly)
North Harbour Stadium, Auckland, 7pm

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