NZ Soccer


New Zealands achievement in qualifying for the 1982 World Cup Finals in Spain ranks as one of New Zealand Sports greatest moments. So great is it in the New Zealand psyche that all you need to say is ‘82’ and people know just what you are referring to. A sport that traditionally struggled for media coverage suddenly became the darling of the press. Players that were largely unknown became household names almost overnight and a nation was captivated by a fairytale few have seen before or since.

Those that played any part in the roller coaster journey will forever remember some wonderful moments. Over time the good seem to cloak the bad. How many can remember the struggle against the Saudi’s at home, the late Kuwait equaliser after a dodgy corner ruling, or the agony of 45 scoreless minutes against Saudi Arabia on the articifical turf in Riyadh. Who needs to when Grant Turners header against Aussie springs to mind, or Ricki Herberts heroics against Saudi Arabia with the last minute equaliser or the marvellous yet nerve tingling night in Singapore that finally saw New Zealand through over the might of China. Whew, what a campaign.

On the way to reaching the finals New Zealand would experience many highs and lows and set a few records for good measure. At the time New Zealand travelled further (55,000 miles), played more games (15), scored more goals (44), and took the longest time of all nations before them to qualify for the finals. Add to that the record (since eclipsed) score of 13 nil against Fiji, the longest time without conceding a goal (921 minutes) and New Zealand Soccer was making all the right headlines.

Surprisingly for a campaign so long and involved, there were just 20 players that made an appearance during qualifying. Figures in brackets are games as substitutes.

Richard Wilson, Bobby Almond, Ricki Herbert, Steve Sumner, Duncan Cole, 15 each; Steve Woodin, 14; Glenn Dods, Grant Turner, 13; Brian Turner, 12; Keith MacKay 11(1); John Hill, 9 (2); Adrian Elrick, 8 (4); Allan Boath, 3 (4); Wynton Rufer, 3; Billy McLure, 2 (1); Clive Campbell, 1 (6); Sam Malcomson, 1 (4); David Bright, 0 (1); Peter Simonsen, 0 (1); Glen Adam 0 (1).

Add to that appearances in the finals themselves where Frank Van Hattum played all three matches in goal and Ken Cresswell played all three matches at fullback.

New Zealand’s 44 goals in qualifying were scored by Brian Turner 9, Grant Turner 8, Steve Wooddin 8, Steve Sumner 8, Wynton Rufer 4, Ricki Herbert 2, Duncan Cole 2, and Adrian Elrick, Keith MacKay and Billy McLure one each.

Steve Sumner and Steve Wooddin Scored for New Zealand in the finals in the 2-5 loss against Scotland.


1982 Photo

1982 Player Profile

Post 82..

ADAM, Glen (Mt Wellington) Defender/midfield. Age 22. Born in New Zealand. Debut against Iran in 1978. Played 19 games for New Zealand. Reserve for almost all games in the World Cup campaign, finally getting his chance in the last game against China in Singapore. Strong player who is now fulfilling his earlier promise and has the prospect of a long international career ahead of him. Glen would go on to play 33 times for NZ, a number hindered by the quality of players produced at the back during his era. Adam missed getting game time in Spain. Glen is now a happy coach to his two sons at Waitakere and is Printing Manager at Polar Cup.
ALMOND, Bobby (Invercargill Thistle) Defender. Age 30. Born in England, came to NZ in 1973. Debut for NZ in 1978 against England B. Has played 36 games for NZ including all 15 WC qualifiers. Unspectacular but steady centre-back. Regarded as the defensive king-pin. Off the field is the uncrowned team leader and one of the most popular team members. Bobby still lives happily in Christchurch and has taken on a coaching job with new side Ferrymead Bays after a 12 yr break. Bobby is heavily involved with the Centre Circle in Christchurch and works with Caltex as Retail Business Manager. Bobby retired after the 82 WC (with 49 caps!). Bobby played the Scots and Brazil in Spain
BOATH, Allan (West Adelaide Aust) Midfield, Age 24. Born Scotland, came to New Zealadn in 1978. Debut for NZ in 1980 against Southern Region on the internal tour. Played in 7 games (4 as sub) in World Cup and has now played 9 times for NZ. Hard running midfielder with good skills. Enticed to Australia by Alan Vest after World Cup game in Singapore. Allan is now living in Sydney. Boath earned a total 65 caps for his country, the bulk of which were picked up while playing National League with Auckland University and North Shore Utd, through until 1988. After forcing his way in relatively late in the piece, Boath played each match in Spain.
BRIGHT, Dave (Manurewa). Defender, age 32. Born in England. Came to NZ in 1975. Debut for NZ in 1979 against Norwich City. Has played 13 games for NZ but made only one appearance (as sub) in World Cup games. Made his mark when he switched to Manurewa under coach John Adshead. Warmly regarded defender but finds it hard to win a place in a team which boasts players like Almond and Herbert. Dave would end his international career after the World Cup but would go on to play at National League level with Manurewa and Papatoetoe before turning his hand to coaching at that level. Dave is still in Manurewa managing RJ Don Panelbeaters.
COLE, Duncan (Hanimex North Shore Utd). Midfield, age 23. Born in England, came to NZ as a youngster. Made his international debut in 1978 against England B after having played for the NZ U/21 team. Has played 35 games for NZ including all 15 in World Cup. One of the fastest players in the squad, hard running midfield player who is also a more than competent defender. Has the ability to score long range goals. Duncan would go on to play a massive 92 games for NZ. He was the heart of the side through the 80's. Cole had game time in all three matches in Spain. Played for Canberra City in '83 before returning to North Shore Utd. Still lives and works on the Shore, these days designing and building swimming pools. Not involved in soccer.
CRESSWELL, Kenny (Gisborne City). Utility. Age 23. NZ born. International debut against Norwich City in 1979. Has played 8 games for NZ. Included in the World Cup squad towards the end of the campaign but did not take the field. Has played in a variety of positions including fullback and midfield. This season is being tried as a striker for Gisborne. Ken went on to become an ever-present in NZ sides through the 80's, amassing 64 caps through until 1988. He played against the USSR and Brazil in Spain. He played well into his thirties, at times in a player-coach role. Ken has had various roles in the NZS coaching set-up. Ken is based in Wellington.
DODS, Glenn (Adelaide City). Defender age 25. NZ born. Debut for NZ against Thailand in 1976. Has played 30 times for NZ including 13 World Cup games. Played much of his early football at left back but these days playes just as often at right back. Fit hard running player who looks to go forward. Surprisingly Dods would add just another 5 caps to his 30. He played against USSR and Brazil in Spain. Dods is these days domiciled in Adelaide with a busy Physiotherapist business, where he has lived for the best part of the past 20 years.
ELRICK, Adrian (Hanimex North Shore Utd) Defender, age 32. Born in Scotland but like Cole came to NZ at an early age. International debut against China in 1975. Has now played 71 games for NZ including 12 (4 as sub) in the World Cup. Able to play at either left back or sweeper, Elrick is, after Brian Turner, the country's most experienced international. Surprised many with some outstanding games in the World Cup marking fast and skilfull opponents. Elrick would go on to play international soccer for another two years, earning a total of 91 caps. Elrick managed to nab the prized number 10 shirt of Zico after the match v Brazil in Spain, where he played in all 3 games. Adrian works in the liquor industry but is not actively involved in coaching. He did coach at Fed age group level in year one of the Federations.
HERBERT, Ricki (Mt Wellington). Defender, age 21. NZ born. Debut against Mexico in 1980, has now played 22 games for NZ including all 15 in World Cup. Tall central defender who came through the WC campaign as one of the stars. Especially remembered for the two vital goals he headed home against China and Saudi Arabia to keep NZ's hopes alive. Had trials with Southampton earlier this year and may still return to play in England. Herbert did return to England and played with Wolves in '84-85. A sub against Scotland, Herbert started against USSR and Brazil. Went on to achieve 84 caps before retiring in 1989. Now Director of Technical Development with NZ Soccer and lives in Auckland with Raewyn and the kids.
HILL, John (Gisborne City). Defender, age 33. Irish-born, Hill came to NZ in 1975. Another who made his debut in the epic 4-0 win over Mexico in 1980. Has now played 16 games for NZ including 11 (2 as sub) in World Cup. Plays at right back and looks to counter-attack. A popular member of the squad who always gives 100%. John would be another to retire from international soccer after 82, with a total of 23 caps. Hill played against Scotland in Spain. Still a 'coaster' John is now Chief Sports Writer with the Gisborne Herald and can be read reviewing the latest big rugby match in town!
MACKAY, Keith (Gisborne City). Midfield, age 25. NZ born. Also made his debut against Mexico. Has played 16 times for NZ including 12 in World Cup. Always lives up to his nickname 'Buzzer'. A busy player always very much a part of the game. A player that Kevin Fallon describes as having the big heart so necessary to survive at the highest level. "Buzzer" still looks the same and has the same enthusiasm for life and the game. Keith is Sport Development Officer with Counties Manukau Sport. Keith went on to play for Manurewa after the World Cup and picked up a total of 48 caps, like Bobby Almond, agonisingly close to the half-century. Keith played in all three matches in Spain.
MCLURE, Billy (Mt Wellington). Midfield/striker. Age 24, English born. Came to NZ in 1979. Naturalised in late 1981 and immediately named in NZ team for the Merdeka Tournament. Has played 8 games for NZ including 3 (1 as sub) in World Cup. A skilfull player. Banged home penalty in NZ's 2-2 draw with Saudi Arabia. Missed later games through injury. Able to play in midfield or up front. Mclure didn't see any game time in Spain, but went on to total 45 caps for NZ. McLure went on to play for Papatoetoe immediately after the cup. A "Peter Pan" of the game, McLure was playing at the top level into his forties and has coached at various levels and clubs, most in the Auckland region.
MALCOMSON, Sam (Kenwood East Coast Bays). Utility. Age 34, born in Scotland. Came to NZ in 1974. Debut against Burma in 1976 - a game in which he scored, and has now played 29 games for NZ including 5 (4 as sub) in World Cup. Oldest player in the squad but still very fit. Capable defender who likes to attack. Very strong in the air, is often used as a striker and has scored more than 50 goals in Rothmans League. Malcolmson was a surprising choice in Spain to play his native Scotland but sat out the other two matches. Malcomson finished up with 32 caps more or less straight after the Cup before heading to Australia where business interests have pretty much kept him for the last 20 years. He is now living back in NZ.
PICKERING, Barry (National Mutual Miramar). Goalkeeper, age 25. NZ born. Debut in Korea in 1978 and has now played 7 times for NZ. Took no part in World Cup campaign. Began his career as a striker but now highly regarded as a goalkeeper. Has returned to play following a cartilage operation during the off season. Tipped by many to eventually fill the No 1 goalkeeping berth. Barry took no part in Spain, being third choice behind Van Hattum and Wilson. Injuries continued to dog him through much of his career, limiting his caps to just 20, the last in 1986. Lives in Wellington.
RUFER, Wynton (National Mutual Miramar). Striker, age 19. NZ born. Made his debut in the NZ B team in Merdeka tournament in 1981. Called into World Cup squad in Middle East and played last 3 games, scored in them all, to bring his international appearances to 8. Exciting prospect who has already scored some great goals including the vital second goal against China in Singapore. Younger brother of former NZ rep Shane. What is there to say. While his international career never took off, his club one was long and full of trophies and personal achievements, one of which was being named Oceania Player of the Century by FIFA. Rufer finished up with 38 caps for NZ. He did of course play in all 3 matches in Spain.
SIMONSEN, Peter (Manurewa). Midfield, age 23. NZ born. First played for country against Iran in 1978. Has now played 9 times for NZ. His only appearance in the World Cup was, like Adam, as a substitute in the vital game in Singapore. Solid midfielder who plays either an attacking or a defensive role. Simonsen didn't take the park in Spain but went on to play for his country a total of 28 times through until 1985. His high levels of fitness saw him continue to play domestically well into his thirties. Has held various coaching positions and is currently back in his beloved Nelson.
SUMNER, Steve (West Adelaide). Midfield, age 27. English born. Came to NZ in 1973. Debut for NZ in 1976 against Burma (as sub). Has made 66 international appearances. Captained NZ in all 15 World Cup games. Determined midfielder who looks to push forward and score goals. Scored 6 in NZ's 13-0 win over Fiji. Looks set to play for NZ for some seasons yet. Captain fantastic played for NZ through until 1988, totalling 105 caps. From 1983 Sumner played for Manurewa for 3 years, winning a Chatham Cup before heading 'home' to Chch Utd. One time assistant NZ coach and completed a term on the Board of NZS. Lives and works in Christchurch and is very active with the Centre Circle organisation.
TURNER, Brian (Gisborne City). Midfielder/striker. Age 31, English born but another who came to NZ at an early age. Debut in 1967 in tournament in Vietnam. Has now played 98 times for NZ. Played in all but 3 of World Cup games. Far and away the country's most experienced player. For long time was midfield general of any team he played in but these days plays as a striker just as often. Skilfull player who has worked hard on fitness during the past year. Turner came off the bench in Spain against Brazil in a fitting end to a great career. Finished with 102 caps. Turner continued to play domestically well into his thirties and has had various coaching roles, primarily with Auckland clubs. Son Steven was a member of the 1999 NZ U/17 squad.
TURNER, Grant (Gisborne City). Midfield, age 23. NZ born, made international debut against Mexico in 1980 and has now played 24 times for NZ. Missed only 2 of the World Cup games. Has had a checkered career often finding himself at odds with the referee. Aggressive attacking midfielder who is best remembered for the goal that sent Australia crashing out of World Cup contention. The cruelest of blows saw Turner invalided out of Spain not long after arrival with a damaged ankle. He would become a regular in the side though, earning 71 caps through until 1986. He never changed his spots either and played with a passion and commitment rarely seen. Turner is currently in Wellington.
VAN HATTUM, Frank (Manurewa). Goalkeeper, age 23. NZ born. International debut on ill-fated Oceania Cup tournament of 1980. Later played in game against Mexico. Has played 11 times for NZ. Sat on the subs bench for all 15 World Cup games without ever playing. Many feel he lacks the consistency to press Richard Wilson although he did make a bold bid for a place in the team for the game against China in Singapore. Has extremely good reflexes. Van Hattum became one of the stories of the Finals, replacing Wilson to play each and every minute in Spain. That form saw him earn a total of 41 caps in a career that is remembered for his great agility and shot-stopping ability. Frank is currently living in Wellington, working as Assett Manager at BP Oil and is Chairman of Capital Soccer.
WILSON, Richard (Preston, Aust). Goalkeeper, age 26. NZ born player who debuted in NZ's 1-0 win over Australia in 1979. Since then has more or less been first choice goalkeeper since. Has now played 30 times for NZ including all 15 World Cup games. A fitness fanatic who often takes the squad for fitness training. Made some spectacular saves during the campaign but at other tiems was blamed for defensive errors. Exceptionally strong on the ground. It is one of the toughest stories in sport - Wilson was replaced by Van Hattum in Spain and did not see any action. Wilson played his last game for NZ in 1987 v England and played National League in Aussie until '89. He returned to NZ in '96 and is player coach with Avon in Fed 6. Wilson is still a 5 days a week 'gym junkie' and dreams of playing until he is 50.
WOODDIN, Steve (South Melbourne). Striker, age 27. English born, came to NZ in 1977. Made his debut in 1980 against Southern Region on internal tour. Has now played 21 games for NZ including 14 World Cup games. Left sided attacker who has scored some classic goals with his deadly left foot. Scored NZ's first goal in win over China. Has been plagued by injuries which threaten to keep him on the sideline. Wooddin would play just 37 times for NZ when he deserved 3 times that. An ankle injury ended his international career in 1984. 2 operations saw another 3 yrs with Chch Tech before stints as coach at Tech (4yrs) and Halswell (3yrs). Steve lives in Christchurch and is still active within the Halswell club. He would still be playing today if the body would allow.
ADSHEAD, John (Manager/Coach). Age 39, born in England. Came to NZ in 1976 and joined Manurewa. Finished second in consecutive Northern League seasons to Hamilton and Courier Rangers. Dream year in 1978 with wins in Northern League, Chatham Cup and adidas Challenge Trophy. Left Manurewa at the end of 78 to take on NZFA Regional Coaching job but returned to Manurewa in '81 before being appointed to the World Cup job. John has since held just about every job there is in the game in NZ. Whilst he never again scaled the giddy heights of 82 his contribution to the game is immeasurable. Of late he has been working in Oman, in particular with their youth programme. He is a regular visitor back home but is often with family in Perth.
FALLON, Kevin (Assistant Coach). Age 32, born in England. Former professional with Rotherham United. Came to NZ and joined Gisborne City in 1972 and played under Allan Vest. Became youngest National League coach in 1974 (24yrs). Has since been player/coach at Gisborne, Nelson, Hamilton. Joined World Cup campaign just before last years epic game against Mexico. Away from soccer interests include Greyhounds and Country Music. Kevin has stayed in the game and has worked with senior sides to juniors. Of late Kevin has set up and worked at the Mt Albert College Academy, producing champion schoolboy sides and individuals. His passion for the game is renowned