US writer rips into Football Ferns ahead of World Cup - 'The cockroaches of women's international soccer'

Despite the positivity emanating from the Football Ferns ahead of their World Cup campaign this year, one American sportswriter has come out firing at the squad and their chances.

Columnist Lauren Theisen wrote on sports website Deadspin the women's football team have gone through hell in the last 12 months and now they're "back to being mediocre".

"New Zealand are the cockroaches of women's international soccer – they're always around," Theison wrote.

"By virtue of playing in limp-ass Oceania and therefore having the luxury to qualify for the biggest tournaments simply by beating up on the even tinier nations around them, New Zealand essentially get free admission to the World Cup every four years.

"And if they're lucky and don't blow it against Cameroon, they might actually win a game this time around."

After a frustrating start to 2018 under former manager Andreas Heraf, the team have managed to change the reported culture of bullying and intimidation into one of positivity and optimism under new coach Tom Sermanni.

Sermanni, who previously coached world No.1 USA, has guided the Ferns to impressive results in his six months at the helm so far, collecting wins against Norway, Mexico and Argentina in their build-up to the World Cup.

They also secured a historic win against England - their first in history against the World No.3 side.

The results meant Theisen had to give some respect to the squad - she chose consistency to be the area she praised.

"If nothing else, especially for a country with such a small population, you have to give the Football Ferns credit for their consistency.

"New Zealand are a threat to frustrate their more talented group stage opponents, the Netherlands and Canada, but if they're going to sneak out of the group, it'll almost assuredly be as a one-win third-place team."

The Football Ferns begin their World Cup campaign tomorrow against World No.8 the Netherlands at 1am NZT.

Sarah Gregorious leads the Football Ferns' celebrations against England
Sarah Gregorious leads the Football Ferns' celebrations against England Source: Photosport

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