Beleaguered NZ Football announce interim boss after months of upheaval

New Zealand Football has announced their interim chief executive following Andy Martin's resignation last month.

Andrew Pragnell, who currently works at Sport New Zealand as manager of the partnerships team, will take over the role for six months while an investigation into the alleged toxic environment at the governing body is ongoing.

Pragnell has recently served as NZF's acting general manager of the partnerships and communications division and previously held leadership roles with Auckland Council and the Human Rights Commission. He's also lectured in sport management at the Auckland University of Technology.

He takes over on  July 30.

NZF President Deryck Shaw says he is delighted to appoint someone of Pragnell's experience to lead the organisation.

NZF came under fire last month after Football Ferns manager Andreas Heraf made controversial comments following his team's exhibition loss to Japan in Wellington.

The comments lead to a mutiny by players, with 13 Ferns submitting written complaints about Heraf to NZF which has since prompted an investigation into the governing body about whether they knew previously about some of the allegations.

As a result, Heraf has been placed on "special leave" while former CEO Martin resigned.

NZF says advertising for the permanent CEO role will begin once the requirements of the position have been agreed upon.

Martin quit amid controversy surrounding Football Ferns coach Andreas Heraf. Source: 1 NEWS


Wellington Phoenix and Adam Parkhouse part ways in A-League

Australian Adam Parkhouse is the latest player to leave the Wellington Phoenix after agreeing to a termination of his A-League contract.

The left-sided player played 36 games for the Phoenix, often in a defensive or midfield role, having arrived in 2016 regarded predominantly as a forward.

He played 18 games in each of two seasons and tallied three assists.

The 25-year-old joins a sizeable list of players who have left since the end of their disappointing 2017-18 campaign.

New coach Mark Rudan said on Tuesday he is taking a hard-line approach when assessing the squad he has inherited.

While certain players had impressed him more than he expected, others were the opposite.

"Some players don't fit into what I want to do, and that's just football," Rudan said.

"It's unfortunate perhaps for the player but I'm very open and honest with them as well.

"If we can't match together, then that's unfortunate."

Rudan's first two signings have been imports - English defender Steven Taylor and Polish goalkeeper Filip Kurto - while Kiwi midfielder Sarpreet Singh's contract was extended.

Parkhouse had previously played for Manly United and had stints in England with Stalybridge Celtic and Skemersdale United.

Phoenix's Adam Parkhouse (Top) jumps for the ball with Newcastle's' MA Leilei during the A-League - Phoenix v Newcastle football match at Westpac Stadium in Wellington on Sunday the 26th of March 2017. Copyright Photo by Marty Melville /
Former Phoenix player Adam Parkhouse. Source: Photosport



Brazilian goal keeper Alisson joins Liverpool as world's most expensive goalie

Brazil goalkeeper Alisson became the world's most expensive goalkeeper on Thursday when he joined Liverpool from Roma.

Roma said the deal for Brazil's starting goalkeeper at the World Cup in Russia "could be worth up to 72.5 million euros" (NZD $125 million).

"In terms of my life and my career, it's a huge step for me being part of this club and this family," the 25-year-old Alisson said.

It is the latest big-money purchase by Liverpool, which hasn't won the English league since its 18th top-flight title in 1990.

Virgil van Dijk became the world's most expensive defender when he joined Liverpool from Southampton for $99 million (NZD $147 million) in January. Central midfielders Fabinho and Naby Keita have joined Liverpool this offseason for a reported combined cost of $120 million (NZD $178 million).

Alisson is set to replace Loris Karius, who made two high-profile mistakes in Liverpool's 3-1 loss to Real Madrid in the Champions League final in May.

"At one point in the last few weeks it came up, the opportunity to sign one of the world's best goalkeepers," Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp said. "Then it's not a long thought, to be honest, it's only that you need to have a little talk with the owners. They were quite excited, so we did it."

Referring to the fee paid by Liverpool, Klopp said: "I think it's something we have to do. He has nothing to do with the price, we have nothing to do with the price. It's the market, that's how it is and we will not think a lot about it."

Gianluigi Buffon has long been the most expensive goalkeeper in history after joining Juventus from Parma for 53 million euros in 2001. Last year, Manchester City signed Brazilian goalkeeper Ederson Moraes from Benfica for 40 million euros (NZD $69 million).

Alisson became Brazil's starting goalkeeper in 2016, under then-coach Dunga, because of his impressive form with Internacional.

Tite, Dunga's replacement, stuck with Alisson despite Ederson's excellent displays for Man City last season.

FILE- In this file photo dated Friday, July 6, 2018, Brazil goalkeeper Alisson reacts after Brazil's Fernandinho scored an own goal, during the quarterfinal match between Brazil and Belgium at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Kazan Arena, in Kazan, Russia.  Liverpool announced Thursday July 19, 2018, the signing of Brazil goalkeeper Alisson from Roma, in the latest big-money purchase by the English club.(AP Photo/Frank Augstein, FILE)
Brazil goalkeeper Alisson reacts after Brazil's Fernandinho scored an own goal. Source: Associated Press