TODAY |

'We want clear governance' – Football NZ not off the hook despite Heraf’s exit

His future was always in question but today Football Ferns coach Andreas Heraf has walked away from New Zealand Football.

Players and stakeholders alike expect the entire organisation to firm up after the saga. Source: 1 NEWS

His resignation the latest of a string of exits from the organisation, leaving New Zealand Football on the hunt for a new women’s coach and technical director.

But the pressure is on those remaining to get things right.

Former Football Ferns captain Maia Jackman, who was the physio on the Spain tour earlier this year, said she saw first-hand the relationship between player and coach disintegrate.

"It was sad," she said.

"You could see some fear in the girls when they were playing which I’ve not seen – ever."

Maia Jackman feels NZ Football could move forward 'leaps and strides' after today's announcement. Source: 1 NEWS

Heraf created a first in New Zealand sport with 13 Football Ferns complaining of intimidation and scare tactics in written letters to the governing body.

That sparked an independent review which not long after saw chief executive Andy Martin resign and the Austrian put on special leave.

1 NEWS understands Heraf returned to Football NZ’s headquarters last night and cleared out his office.

While Football NZ says Heraf will continue to participate in the independent review, their approach is frustrating other stakeholders in the game, including the NZ professional footballers association.

"We want to see some clear, clear governance," Harry Ngata said on behalf of the association.

"Some clear transparency around how our game is facilitated."

Jackman added removing Heraf was only half the problem – the women’s game still needs to be resurrected from the fallout.

"It’s bigger than Andreas leaving.

"There’s bigger things that need to be resolved so that the environment within the whole organisation is good because it’s top-down really."

The first big decision might be needed soon with the Ferns beginning their World Cup qualifying in four months.