The Wellington Phoenix face the possibility of five All Whites players missing the Round 5 A-League match against Perth Glory in Christchurch on November 9 due to their call up for the All Whites World Cup qualifier in Mexico.
New Zealand Football have requested that five players – Glen Moss, Leo Bertos, Andrew Durante, Ben Sigmund and Jeremy Brockie – not play the Round 5 match against Perth Glory.
Subsequent to the A-League draw being made, the first leg against Mexico was brought forward to November 13. The first day of the release window is November 9.
FIFA regulations state that players called up to a full international must be released five days before the match, inclusive of the day of the match. Players may play on the first day of the window for their Club if the association permits it.
With the change in the schedule the Phoenix worked hard for a compromise solution and built a schedule which enabled the Phoenix All Whites to make the proposed NZF flights and had arranged for the players to be in Auckland in time for their flight to Los Angeles with the rest of the squad following the clash with Glory in Christchurch.
This was rejected by NZF.
Phoenix General Manager David Dome said the club was extremely disappointed that NZF had decided not to allow Phoenix players in the All Whites squad to play against Perth Glory, especially as during the October FIFA window the Phoenix had, in good faith, allowed its New Zealand internationals to be released for a longer window than the regulations required.
“It is disappointing as FIFA regulations allow the players to play in Christchurch should both parties agree.”
“NZF has stated they want the players in LA on November 9. We can get the players to LA arriving on the 9th”.
“We were hoping NZF would accept our unique position of having five players called out of our squad with the change in the window and to come to a compromise with us but this has proven not to be the case”.
Dome said the club was still clarifying with FIFA some technical definitions of the regulations with a view to the players being made available for the Christchurch game.