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National Women's League Coverage
National Women's League, Round Six review

All To Play For In Final Round
Story by Jeremy Ruane

Everything's on the line in next Sunday's final round of National Women's League action, after a shock defeat for reigning champions Northern Football on November 20 threw the play-off places wide open.

The title-holders were overturned 2-1 by Capital Football, who in winning swept to the top of the table and booked themselves a play-off spot, even though they'll be looking on from the sidelines next weekend.
Read on Published: 20 November 2016

National Women's League match report - Waikato-Bay of Plenty v. Canterbury United Pride

Canterbury Hit WaiBOP's Play-Off Hopes For Six
Story by Jeremy Ruane

Canterbury United Pride dealt Waikato-Bay of Plenty's National Women's League play-off hopes a serious blow at Cambridge's John Kerkhof Park on November 20, pummelling the locals 6-1, all but securing their own play-off spot in the process.

The visitors were in the zone from the very first whistle, Lily Bray's strong driving run in the third element, supplemented by a one-two with Macey Fraser, allowing the midfielder to get to the by-line, from where she picked out Annalie Longo, whose smart turn unhinged the defence and invited the Football Fern to unleash a fifteen yard drive which arrowed a foot past the post.
Read on Published: 21 November 2016

Stirling Sports Premiership Coverage
Stirling Sports Premiership - Round Five Review

"Lilywhites" Lead As Cross-Town Rivals Stumble
By Jeremy Ruane

Eastern Suburbs have taken over at the top of the Stirling Sports Premiership after fifth round action produced a couple of surprise results, and a first competition win for Tasman United.

"The Lilywhites" put Southern United to the sword at Bill McKinlay Park, prevailing 4-0 after Armin Pasagic's early penalty found the net, unlike that taken by Southern's Danny Ledwith soon afterwards, which was saved by Silvio Rodic.
Read on Published: 20 November 2016

Stirling Sports Premiership match report - Southern United v. Canterbury United

Clapham Celebrates His 'Hundy' With A 'Hatty'
By Jeremy Ruane

Canterbury United playmaker Aaron Clapham marked his 100th appearance for the club in style at Forsyth Barr Stadium on October 30, scoring a hat-trick to lead his side to a 3-1 win over Southern United in their Stirling Sports Premiership derby encounter.

Clapham was afforded an early chance to open his account when Stephen Last felled Andre de Jong inside the penalty area just two minutes into the contest. Needless to say, it was 1-0 very shortly afterwards from the twelve yard mark, with Liam Little sent the wrong way.
Read on Published: 31 October 2016

FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup Finals
Junior Ferns' Road To PNG - France match report

France End Junior Ferns' World Cup Hopes
Story by Jeremy Ruane

The Junior Ferns' hopes of making back-to-back FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup quarter-finals evaporated at Bava Park in Port Moresby on November 21, as France comfortably accounted for Leon Birnie's charges 2-0 to secure a spot in the last eight at New Zealand's expense.

From the outset, the French proved themselves the superior combination, requiring just five minutes to get into the groove. Captain Delphine Cascarino - a menace down the right all game long - was released by Clara Mateo and got in behind Sarah Morton, who managed to recover and get a foot in.
Read on Published: 22 November 2016

A-League & Wellington Phoenix Coverage.
Hyundai A-League, Round Seven review

Sydney's Winning Streak Ended By Brisbane
Story by Jeremy Ruane

Brisbane Roar brought an end to Sydney FC's winning streak in the Hyundai A-League on the penultimate weekend in November, but the league leaders retained their six-point advantage at the top of the table, despite being held to a 1-1 draw.

Sydney should have had the points well and truly wrapped up before half-time in front of 17,322 fans at Suncorp Stadium, but squandered numerous chances other than that taken by Josh Brilliante thirteen minutes into the contest.
Read on Published: 20 November 2016

Hyundai A-League match report - Central Coast Mariners v. Wellington Phoenix

Milestone For Merrick As Wellington Climb To Sixth
by Jeremy Ruane

Despite missing half their regular starting eleven due to international commitments, Wellington Phoenix scored a courageous 2-0 win over Central Coast Mariners at Canberra's GIO Stadium on November 12 to climb to sixth place on the Hyundai A-League ladder.

A lively opening quarter-hour saw both teams have chances to open the scoring inside the first three minutes. Matthew Ridenton's mis-timed clearance went straight to Blake Powell, who threaded a pass through to Fabio Ferreira which allowed the speedster to hit a teasing cross-shot just past Lewis Italiano's far post, much to the 'keeper's relief.
Read on Published: 13 November 2016

All Whites Coverage.
All Whites' Road to Russia 2018 - New Caledonia away match report

Uninspiring All Whites Hold New Caledonia To Draw
By Jeremy Ruane

New Zealand's All Whites produced a below-par performance as they held New Caledonia to a 0-0 draw at the Stade Yoshida in Kone on November 15, a result which leaves Anthony Hudson's side firmly in control of an Oceania World Cup qualifying group which also contains Fiji.

Needing to win to keep their own World Cup prospects alive, the New Caledonians set about doing so initially via the raids of Jarys Mene and captain Bertrand Kai, but it was the black-clad All Whites who produced the first goalscoring opportunity of the match, in the thirteenth minute.
Read on Published: 16 November 2016

Northern, Central & Mainland Premier Women's League & Northern Men's League.
Lotto Northern Premier Women's League, August 21 review

Three Kings Complete Perfect League Season
Story by Jeremy Ruane

Three Kings United recorded something achieved just five times previously on Sunday, overcoming previous Lotto Northern Premier Women's League champions Claudelands Rovers 7-2 at Galloway Park to complete the perfect league season.

Mt. Wellington, in 1983, 1984, 1985 and 1986, and Eden, in 1987, are the only previous teams to record duck-eggs in both the draws and losses columns on the league table, but until now, the latter club are the only ones to have won all eighteen games they played in a single campaign.
Read on Published: 21 August 2016

Central & Mainland Premier Women's Leagues, August 21 review

Cashmere Claim Maiden Championship
Story by Jeremy Ruane

Seatoun and Upper Hutt City will meet in the final of the Kelly Cup this season after scoring contrasting victories over Capital Premier League opposition in the semi-finals on August 21.

Holders Seatoun eased past Stop Out 4-0, with Annie Olssen opening the scoring after twelve minutes before three goals in fourteen minutes around the hour mark secured their passage, Juliet Conway, Grace Surridge and Julia Baldwin taking turns to lead the celebrations at Hutt Park.
Read on Published: 21 August 2016

Lotto Northern League promotion play-off report

Ngongotaha Celebrate Golden Jubilee In Style
Story by Jeremy Ruane

Ngongotaha marked the club's Golden Jubilee year in fine style at Parrs Park on October 8, overwhelming Lynn-Avon United 4-2 on the day, and 6-3 on aggregate, to clinch a return to the Lotto Northern League for the first time since 1994.

Trailing 2-1 from the first leg, United had to win the contest if they were to return to the league after a one-year absence, and they duly applied pressure from the outset. But the first chance fell to the Bay of Plenty club, with Mitch Miller testing Phillip Watts in the fifth minute.
Read on Published: 09 October 2016

FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup Finals
Young Ferns' Road To Jordan - Jordan match report

Young Ferns Finish With Five-Goal Flourish
Story by Jeremy Ruane

New Zealand's Young Ferns wrapped up their FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup campaign on an emphatic winning note at the Prince Mohammed International Stadium in Al Zarqa on 7 October, crushing host nation Jordan 5-0 in front of 4,493 fans to score the country's biggest ever victory at a FIFA Finals tournament.

Hannah Blake claimed the Player of the Match award with a hat-trick, after setting up the first goal of the match for Sammi Tawharu just five minutes into the contest. Emma Main sent the Lotto Northern Premier Women's League's Young Player of the Year scampering down the left, and her pinpoint low cross allowed Tawharu to pick her spot from six yards out.

Six minutes later, captain Michaela Foster flighted a corner to the far post which was an invitation to score, only for Rebecca Lake to inexplicably head it back across goal, spurning the chance to double the Young Ferns' advantage in the process.
Read on Published: 08 October 2016

Chatham Cup & Knockout Cup Coverage.
2016 National Women's Knockout Cup Final match report - Forrest Hill-Milford United v. Glenfield Rovers

"Swans" On The Spot To Thwart Rovers' "Three-Peat"
Story by Jeremy Ruane

Glenfield Rovers' hopes of becoming just the third club to "three-peat" in the history of the National Women's Knockout Cup were dashed by neighbouring Forrest Hill-Milford United at QBE Stadium on September 11, as "The Swans" prevailed 4-3 on penalties after two hours of compelling Cup Final action produced a 2-2 draw.

The cup holders tore into their work straight from the kick-off, captain Liz Milne firing the first shot in anger narrowly past the far post a mere twelve seconds after Anna-Marie Keighley blew the whistle to commence the sixth Cup Final she has refereed.
Read on Published: 12 September 2016

2016 Chatham Cup Final match report - Birkenhead United v. Waitakere City

Waitakere Fightback Can't Deny Birkenhead's Cup Joy
by Jeremy Ruane

Birkenhead United claimed their maiden Chatham Cup in dramatic fashion at QBE Stadium on September 11, overcoming Waitakere City 3-2 after a period of extra time in which they'd been reduced to ten men, and this after having seemed to have the cup within easy reach when two goals up with just four minutes to play in normal time.

But Waitakere, till now unbeaten in 2016, produced a stunning comeback to level the scores and force the extra half-hour of play, during which the Lotto Northern League First Division champions spurned some glorious chances to complete their fightback in thrilling fashion.
Read on Published: 12 September 2016

2016 Olympic Games Coverage.
Olympic Women's Football Tournament - Matchday Six review

Gold For Germany As Canada Retain Bronze
Story by Jeremy Ruane

Germany afforded long-serving coach Silvia Neid the perfect farewell present at the Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro on August 19, overcoming a tenacious Sweden side 2-1 to win the gold medal at the 2016 Olympic Womenís Football Tournament.

In the first-ever all-European gold medal encounter, one in which both contenders were first-time finalists, it was the Swedes who first threatened, Olivia Scough spurning the chance to break the deadlock when directing Lotta Schelinís cross over the bar.

The Germans also had opportunities to open the scoring before half-time, most notably through Melanie Leupolz and Anja Mittag, but three minutes after the break they did find the target, and how!
Read on Published: 20 August 2016

Football Ferns Coverage.
Football Ferns' Road To Rio - France

French Farewell Spotlights Ferns' Future Prospects
Story by Jeremy Ruane

The Football Ferns' hopes of securing a second successive quarter-final berth at the Olympic Women's Football Tournament were dashed by France in the Fonte Nova Arena in Salvador on August 9, the victors playing well within themselves in prevailing by a solid 3-0 scoreline.

The first half-hour of play was very staid - it was almost as if both teams were looking to playing to not lose, with a scoreless draw a result which would serve the purposes of both teams where quarter-finals progression was concerned, no matter what happened in other matches.

"Les Bleues" were the more threatening side during this period, but the white-clad French were well contained by New Zealand's rearguard, who allowed just one shot worthy of the name in this period, a twenty yard volley from Jessica Houara in the 27th minute, which sailed past the post after Louisa Cadamuro's corner had been cleared to the fullback.
Read on Published: 11 August 2016

OFC Coverage.
OFC U-20 Championship 2016

OFC Media: New Zealand seal sixth title
Oceania Football Confederation Media Release

A comprehensive team performance from New Zealand has seen them secure the OFC U-20 Championship title with a 5-0 victory over fellow FIFA U-20 World Cup qualifiers Vanuatu.

New Zealand coach Darren Bazeley said he was incredibly pleased with the win, but it was the performance from his side which impressed him most today.
Read on Published: 17 September 2016

FIFA Women's World Cup Finals
FIFA WWC Final match report - USA v. Japan

Five-Star USA Triumph In Style In "The Carli Cup Final"
Story by Jeremy Ruane In Canada

It will go down in history as "The Carli Cup Final", due to the outstanding individual display of captain Carli Lloyd, but the all-round performance of Team USA was every bit as significant and decisive as they brought the four-year reign of Japan as world champions of women's football to an emphatic end at Vancouver's BC Place Stadium on July 5.

To win any cup final 5-2 is an amazing achievement. To do so in the global spotlight which the FIFA Women's World Cup Final attracts is something else again. This wasn't just a win by the world's most successful women's football-playing nation. This was a triumph. And one achieved in some style.

And in a heck of a hurry! In a manner not dissimilar to Liverpool's demolition job on Arsenal at Anfield in the 2013-14 English Premier League season, the USA were 4-0 up and in dreamland after just sixteen minutes.
Read on Published: 08 July 2015


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Northern Premier Women's League
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Northern 1st Div Men's League
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Northern 2nd Div Men's League
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