TFC coach Ryan Nelsen still refers to New Zealand's unbeaten run through the 2010 FIFA World Cup as an “unbelievable” achievement. (Toronto Sun Files)
Toronto FC head coach Ryan Nelsen still refers to New Zealand’s unbeaten run through the 2010 FIFA World Cup as an “unbelievable” achievement.
It was a gutsy string of three group games that will undoubtedly go down as one of the greatest team performances in the history of the tournament.
In succession, the Kiwis drew Slovakia, Italy and Paraguay, even barging out to a shock lead against the mighty Azzurri before failing to advance on three points.
Still, for little ol’ New Zealand, it was satisfying — and Nelsen said the work the All Whites put in prior to the 2010 tournament is something that has helped shape his ideals as he enters his first season as an MLS manager.
“We were a New Zealand team where if we did not get every single thing right, we could have been North Korea,” Nelsen told the Sun, referring to North Korea’s minus-11 goal difference at the competition.
“I had one opportunity at (a World Cup) and you have to get it right.”