Tony Readings has been appointed head coach of New Zealand following the recent departure of John Herdman who has taken the reins of 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup™ hosts Canada.
Readings, who assisted Herdman in New Zealand’s FIFA Women’s World Cup campaigns of 2007 and 2011, as well as the 2008 Beijing Olympics, is also currently head coach of the U-20 national team, a role he will retain.
New Zealand will now seek to win next year’s Oceania qualifying tournament for London 2012 and reach successive Women’s Olympic Football Tournaments for the first time.
“It’s a privilege and honour to be leading the Football Ferns and I am excited about the new role and the added responsibility that it brings,” said Readings. “I am also looking forward to continuing to work with the players to help the team strive towards achieving their Olympic goals.
“My time as assistant coach has been invaluable and has prepared me well. My job now is to strengthen and develop the programme to ensure that the positive momentum that has been gathered continues.
"John did a great job with the team and my appointment ensures that there will be a level of continuity moving forward. However, I intend to develop the programme with new ideas and approaches to further strengthen the Football Ferns environment.”
Currently a domestic-based squad is training weekly in Auckland in preparation for the Cyprus Cup and Peace Queen Cup.
Meanwhile, Herdman will also lead the Junior Football Ferns into action next January as the team seek to qualify for the 2012 FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup in Uzbekistan.