Former Football Ferns captain Abby Erceg says the players should take more responsibility for the New Zealand team’s lack of recent form at international level.
“New Zealand is going to fall behind if we can’t keep up even on a fitness level, let alone a tactical, technical level. It’s going to be very difficult for us to maintain any type of performance,” she told 1News.
Erceg (34), who made herself unavailable for the Ferns last year after 146 appearances, made her comments in an interview with 1News after the naming of the Football Ferns squad to play in the OFC Women’s Olympic Qualifier tournament.
“We’re not where we need to be and we are not where we should be,” Erceg said.
“We haven’t progressed in a number of years; we’re not winning games; this is a tough environment for me to be in and to invest my time into if people aren’t going to take it as seriously as they should.”
Erceg explained why the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup wasn’t enough to entice her out of international retirement.
“You just get to a point where you have to decide where you’re going to invest your time, if you’re going to come back to an environment where the same mistakes are happening, the same behaviours are happening, and the same results are happening because of it, it’s tough.”
While Erceg is no longer playing for her country, she’s still performing at top level in the United States, playing for National Women’s Soccer League club Racing Louisville.