1 Nov 2021

All Whites' encouraged to get Covid-19 vaccination

6:15 pm on 1 November 2021

New Zealand Football (NZF) say they have told all players in contention for the All Whites they risk missing out on selection if they are unvaccinated against Covid-19.

Marco Stamenic, Nando Pijnaker, Chris Wood and Michael Boxall playing against Bahrain 2021


The news comes after it was revealed at the weekend that one player had missed selection for a pair of matches in Abu Dhabi this month because they were unvaccinated.

In naming the latest squad on Monday, NZF said they wouldn't be revealing who the unvaccinated player was.

"All of [this] squad are vaccinated against COVID-19, as is required for playing and training in Abu Dhabi.

"New Zealand Football has stressed the importance of vaccination to all players in contention for the team as well as informed them that they risk missing out on future selection if they are unvaccinated.

"New Zealand Football will not be releasing the vaccination status of individual players not selected for the team."

The playing group for a friendly against The Gambia on November 17 and a warmup match against a to-be-confirmed side four days earlier included two uncapped players.

Jamie Searle and Francis de Vries had earned the call-up, while Elliot Collier had earned a recall to the squad, which again featured no New Zealand or Australian-based players due to Covid travel restrictions.

All Whites coach Danny Hay stressed the importance of continuing to build the momentum from the October window, when the team collected back-to-back wins against Curaçao and Bahrain.

"It's great we are able to get together again so quickly after two good performances last month.

"We need to be playing games to develop as a team, especially after such a long break prior to October, so we want to take every opportunity we can.

"These games will allow us to look at a few new players who weren't part of the last window as we continue to build towards FIFA World Cup qualifiers next year."

Veteran defender Winston Reid was unavailable in a playing capacity but was travelling to Abu Dhabi to train with the squad and would also continue in his role mentoring the younger members of the team.

The full 21-man squad is:

Stefan Marinovic (26 Caps) Hapoel Nof HaGalil, Israel

Jamie Searle* (0 Caps) Swansea City, Wales

Michael Woud (3 Caps) Almere City FC, Netherlands

Michael Boxall (35 Caps) Minnesota United, USA

Liberato Cacace (5 Caps) Sint-Truidense VV, Belgium

Francis De Vries* (0 Caps) IFK Värnamo, Sweden

Kelvin Kalua (2 Caps) Eastern Suburbs, New Zealand (currently on trial in Europe)

Niko Kirwan (2 Caps) Padova, Italy

Nando Pijnaker (3 Caps) FC Helsingør (loan from Rio Ave FC), Denmark

Tommy Smith (40 Caps) Colchester United, England

Bill Tuiloma (27 Caps) Portland Timbers, USA

Joe Bell (4 Caps) Viking FK, Norway

Matthew Garbett (2 Caps) Torino, Italy

Sarpreet Singh (7 Caps) SSV Jahn Regensburg (loan from FC Bayern Münich), Germany

Marko Stamenic (2 Caps) HB Køge (on loan from FC Copenhagen), Denmark

Joseph Champness (1 Cap) Giresunspor, Turkey

Elliot Collier (2 Caps) Chicago Fire, USA

Andre de Jong (6 Caps) AmaZulu FC, South Africa

Elijah Just (4 Caps) FC Helsingør, Denmark

Callum McCowatt (3 Caps) FC Helsingør, Denmark

Chris Wood (59 Caps) Burnley FC, England

*Debut senior national team call-up