Many of the All Whites’ regular stars have not made the cut for the India tour.
With the much-awaited Intercontinental Cup around the corner, New Zealand have announced their squad for the tournament to be staged in India. However, much to the disappointment of football fans across the country, the All Whites will be without the services of their star players as Kiwi head coach Fritz Schmid has decided to bring a fresh bunch of lads, a very young and inexperienced side for the four-nation event.
Notably, star forward Chris Wood, who plays for Burnley in the Premier League isn’t a part of the coach’s plans for the upcoming event. Wood has been instrumental to Sean Dyche’s squad in the recently concluded Premier League season, scoring 12 goals in 29 games across all competitions.
New Zealand squad for the upcoming Intercontinental Cup
Another star to miss out will be West Ham United defender Winston Reid. The experienced defender picked up a knee injury against Swansea City in March and will be missing the national team call-up.
The All Whites have called up Indian-origin starlet Sarpreet Singh, a 19-year-old midfielder who has recently broken into the limelight as his performance in the FIFA U-20 World Cup caught the attention of many around the world.
Besides, a host of experienced All White stars who are plying their trade in the Major League Soccer (MLS) are set to miss out on the trip to India as the Swiss tactician aims to rebuild the New Zealand squad for the next couple of years after they failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
The tournament will be a much-needed preparatory test for the host nation as they gear up for the 2019 AFC Asian Cup in January. Besides New Zealand (OFC), the tournament features India (AFC), Chinese Taipei (AFC) and Kenya (CAF). All the four teams will play each other once, with the top two teams vying for the trophy on June 10.
New Zealand kick-off their Intercontinental Cup campaign against Kenya on 2nd June (IST).