New Zealand’s most-capped player Ivan Vicelich has finally drawn the curtain on a remarkable 19-year international career.
The elegant central defender, who will continue to play for club side Auckland City, won 88 caps for the All Whites, scoring six goals in an international career that ran from 1995 to 2013.
The high point of a glittering career was the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ with Vicelich featuring prominently in all three group matches as the All Whites were eliminated at the group stage despite being the only undefeated team at the tournament.
Vicelich had already called an end to his international career when he answered an SOS from coach Ricki Herbert in 2009.
“It was an absolute honour to represent my country and to be able to do it for 19 years and play in a FIFA World Cup is really special,” said Vicelich. “Playing for the All Whites is an honour and a privilege for me and my family and I enjoyed every single match I played for the national team.
“The memories I have from wearing the all-white strip and the friendships I have developed is something I will cherish forever.
“I have been fortunate enough to share in some very special moments with the All Whites but it is hard to go past the win over Bahrain to qualify for the World Cup in 2009. It was a memorable night for me as a football player but the joy it brought to all New Zealanders and the football community was amazing.”
Vicelich also represented the All Whites with distinction at three FIFA Confederations Cups; Mexico 1999, France 2003 and South Africa 2009.
His final outing for the All Whites was the unsuccessful intercontinental play-off for Brazil 2014 against Mexico late last year.
Vicelich retires as the most capped All White of all time with 88 international caps, well ahead of Simon Elliot (69) and Vaughan Coveny (64).