Auckland City Football Club is a New Zealand semi-professional football club based in the suburb of Sandringham in Auckland, New Zealand. They currently compete in the ISPS Handa Premiership, the highest level of domestic football in New Zealand.[1] Auckland City have established themselves as a major force in both New Zealand and Oceania, having won seven league titles and nine OFC Champions League titles since their foundation.[1][2]

Auckland City
logo
Full nameAuckland City Football Club
Nickname(s)City, The Navy Blues
Short nameACFC
Founded2004; 16 years ago (2004)[1]
GroundKiwitea Street
Capacity3,500
Coordinates36°53′51″S 174°44′13″E / 36.89750°S 174.73694°E / -36.89750; 174.73694Coordinates: 36°53′51″S 174°44′13″E / 36.89750°S 174.73694°E / -36.89750; 174.73694
ChairmanIvan Vuksich
ManagerJosé Figueira
LeagueNew Zealand Football Championship
2018–191st (regular season), semi-finals (playoffs)
WebsiteClub website
Current season

Formed in 2004 following the inception of the New Zealand Football Championship, a brand new top level of domestic football in New Zealand, Auckland City currently play their home matches at Kiwitea Street in Sandringham, New Zealand.[3] The club is the most successful in Oceania history, having won seven consecutive OFC Champions League titles between 2011 and 2017 - the most consecutive continental titles of any football team in history.[4] This has resulted in Auckland becoming a regular fixture at the FIFA Club World Cup, famously achieving a third-placed finish in the 2014 edition.[5][6] Auckland City's youth team currently plays in the National Youth League, being the most successful team in the competition with six titles.[7]

Auckland City's regular kit colours are faintly striped royal blue shirts and shorts with white socks. The current crest, in use since the club's inception, features the Sky Tower, an iconic Auckland landmark. The club has a strong Croatian influence, being strongly associated with and playing at the same stadium as Central United (formed in 1962 by Dalmatian immigrants);

HistoryEdit

 
The Auckland City team in 2011

Auckland City has won the regular season seven times, and the Grand Final six times. They represented the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC) in the OFC Champions League, which they won most recently in 2017 for the ninth time (seventh in a row). With a third place in 2014, they also became the only OFC team to reach the semi-finals of the FIFA Club World Cup. They are also the only team to win the continental treble three times.

In 2017, Auckland City were invited to play in the Lunar New Year Cup, a friendly tournament hosted in Hong Kong.[8] Auckland City defeated South Korean champions FC Seoul in the semifinal, before defeating Hong Kong side Kitchee in the final to lift the trophy.[9] Auckland City were again invited for the 2019 edition, falling to Chinese Super League club Shandong Luneng 2-1.[10]

Following the conclusion of the 2018–19 season, in which Auckland City won all but one game in their undefeated season but fell short in both the OFC Champions League and the league playoffs, long-term manager Ramon Tribulietx brought his association with the club to an end and was replaced by Team Wellington coach José Figueira ahead of the 2019–20 season.[11][12]

FIFA Club World CupEdit

2009

Auckland City overcame local champions Al Ahli 2–0 in the opening play-off match, with goals by Adam Dickinson and Chad Coombes. In their quarter final clash against CONCACAF champions Atlante of Mexico, the side lost 0–3.

The play-off for fifth and sixth place was described by coach Paul Posa as "the greatest night in the history of Auckland City Football Club", as the team defeated CAF Champions League winners TP Mazembe of the Democratic Republic of Congo 3–2. The goal scorers on this special occasion were Jason Hayne with two and Riki van Steeden.

These historic victories were the first recorded by a New Zealand team at the Club World Cup, and the first by an amateur side at this tournament. This was also the first time that a senior men's representative team from New Zealand has recorded a victory in a world FIFA competition.

2014

Auckland City played Moroccan league champions Moghreb Tétouan in a play-off for the quarter-finals on 10 December. The match finished goalless, with Auckland winning 4–3 in a penalty shoot-out and qualifying for a quarter-final clash against AFC Champions League winners ES Sétif.[13] Auckland City defeated ES Sétif 1–0, courtesy of a John Irving goal, and advanced to the semi-finals for the first time ever.

Auckland played Copa Libertadores champions San Lorenzo in the semifinals, but lost 2–1. A shock seemed possible when a second-half goal from Ángel Berlanga cancelled out Pablo Barrientos' first-half strike for San Lorenzo, but substitute Mauro Matos netted San Lorenzo's winner in extra time.[5]

They finished the tournament with a historic 4-2 penalty shootout win over CONCACAF Champions League winners Cruz Azul in the third-place playoff after a 1–1 draw at full time, with substitute Sanni Issa scoring the ultimate penalty just days after signing for the club.[14][15] The result gained the side worldwide acclaim, as the team of part-timers and amateurs defied all expectations in the competition. Club stalwart and defender Ivan Vicelich came third in the Golden Ball award for best player at the tournament, behind Cristiano Ronaldo and Sergio Ramos of Real Madrid.[16]

Current players and staffEdit

First-team squadEdit

As of 13 October 2019[17][18]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1   GK Eñaut Zubikarai
2   MF Mario Ilich
3   DF Adam Mitchell
4   MF Mario Bilen
5   DF Ángel Berlanga (captain)
6   DF Brian Kaltak
7   MF Cameron Howieson
8   MF Albert Riera
9   FW Myer Bevan
10   MF Dylan Manickum
11   DF Tom Doyle
No. Position Player
13   FW Emiliano Tade
14   DF Jordan Vale
16   MF Yousif Ali Al-Kalisy
17   DF Andrew Blake
18   GK Conor Tracey
19   FW David Browne
20   FW Logan Rogerson
21   FW Maro Bonsu-Maro
22   MF Clayton Lewis
23   DF Alfie Rogers
24   GK Cameron Brown

Youth squadEdit

Auckland City's youth squad currently competes in the National Youth League, and are the current champions, as well as the most successful side in the competition's history with six titles. They are managed by former New Zealand international Kris Bright.[19]

As of 9 October 2019

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1   GK Sam Bottomley
2   DF Nathan Lobo
3   DF Jackson Woods
4   DF Nicholas Milicich
5   DF Dhanush Chandra
6   MF Callum McNeill
7   MF Matt Hodgson
8   MF Miles Palmer
9   FW Tawanda Marowa
10   MF Matt Ellis
11   MF DeAndre Vollenhoven
12   MF Jesse Gage
No. Position Player
13   MF Malcolm Young
14   MF Colin Holthuis-Spann
15   MF Harrison Freeman
16   MF Corban Piper
17   FW Thomas Drillien
18   GK Luca Taylor
19   DF Bradley Wilson
20   MF Louis Middeldorp
21   MF Finn McCracken
22   MF Micaiah Papa
23   FW Aidan Carey

Coaching staffEdit

Position
Manager   José Figueira
Assistant Manager   Ivan Vicelich
Team Manager   Keith Coton
Goalkeeper Coach   Simone Naddi
Fitness Coach   Adrià Casals
Technical Analyst   Jacob Weaver
Youth Manager   Kris Bright

Medical staffEdit

Position Name
Physiotherapist   Matt Payne
  Danny Kelly
Club Doctor   Craig Panther
Massage Therapist   Natalia Kozinska
  Eva Nagy

ManagersEdit

Notable former playersEdit

The following players gained international caps for their respective countries. Players listed in bold represented their countries while playing for Auckland City.

StadiumEdit

 
Kiwitea Street in 2011

Freyberg Field, then a public park, was made available for use as a football field in 1965 for tenants Central United. Following intense development on what became affectionately known as Kiwitea Street, the field quickly became one of the best playing surfaces in New Zealand, and was made available to Auckland City following their foundation in 2004. Since then, the amenities at Kiwitea Street have been overhauled, including a new clubrooms and a resurfaced pitch in 2007.

The stadium seats 250 spectators, with additional standing room.

SeasonsEdit

Season New Zealand Football Championship Finals series Top goalscorer Managers
Div. Pos. Pl. W D L GS GA P Name League
2004–05 1st 1st 21 14 4 3 53 24 46 Champions   Grant Young 15   Allan Jones
2005–06 1st 1st 21 16 0 5 63 28 48 Champions   Keryn Jordan 22
2006–07 1st 3rd 21 12 6 3 50 30 42 Champions   Grant Young 11   Roger Wilkinson
  Paul Marshall
2007–08 1st 2nd 21 16 2 3 44 16 50 Preliminary Finals   Bryan Little 8   Colin Tuaa
2008–09 1st 2nd 14 8 1 5 27 15 25 Champions   Keryn Jordan
  Paul Urlovic
5   Paul Posa
2009–10 1st 1st 14 9 4 1 33 13 31 Semi-finals   Jason Hayne 7   Paul Posa
2010–11 1st 2nd 14 9 3 2 29 12 30 Runners-up   Daniel Koprivcic 7   Aaron McFarland
  Ramon Tribulietx
2011–12 1st 1st 14 11 3 0 43 11 36 Semi-finals   Manel Exposito 9   Ramon Tribulietx
2012–13 1st 2nd 14 10 3 1 40 12 33 Runners-up   Manel Exposito 11
2013–14 1st 1st 14 10 3 1 40 12 33 Champions   Emiliano Tade 17
2014–15 1st 1st 14 12 0 2 39 14 42 Champions   David Browne 7
2015–16 1st 1st 14 12 2 0 43 12 38 Runners-up   Ryan De Vries 15
2016–17 1st 1st 18 11 3 4 35 15 36 Runners-up   Emiliano Tade 13
2017–18 1st 1st 18 12 4 2 41 12 40 Champions   Emiliano Tade 18
2018–19 1st 1st 18 17 1 0 46 18 52 Semi-finals   Javier López 8

ContinentalEdit

Season Competition Round Club Home Away Aggregate
2005 OFC Club Championship Preliminary round   Manumea w/o w/o w/o
Group Stage   Sydney FC 2–3 3rd
  A.S. Pirae 0–1
  Sobou 6–1
2006 OFC Club Championship Group Stage   Marist Fire 2–3 1st
  A.S. Pirae 1–0
  Sobou 7–0
Semi Final   Nokia Eagles 9–1
Final   A.S. Pirae 3–1
2007 OFC Champions League Group Stage   Waitakere United 2–2 2–2 2nd
  Mont-Dore 4–0 2–0
2007–08 OFC Champions League Group Stage   Waitakere United 0–1 1–1 2nd
  A.S. Manu-Ura 6–0 1–0
2008–09 OFC Champions League Group Stage   Waitakere United 2–2 3–1 1st
  Port Vila Sharks 8–1 2–0
Final   Koloale 2–2 7–2 9–4
2009–10 OFC Champions League Group Stage   Waitakere United 2–2 1–1 2nd
  AS Magenta 2–1 1–1
  A.S. Manu-Ura 5–0 2–0
2010–11 OFC Champions League Group Stage   Waitakere United 1–0 1–1 1st
  AS Magenta 3–0 1–0
  A.S. Tefana 5–0 1–1
Final   Amicale 4–0 2–1 6–1
2011–12 OFC Champions League Group Stage   Hekari United 2–0 1–1 1st
  Koloale 7–3 4–1
  Amicale 3–2 0–1
Final   A.S. Tefana 2–1 1–0 3–1
2012–13 OFC Champions League Group Stage   Waitakere United 0–1 3–1 2nd
  A.S. Dragon 1–3 1–1
  Mont-Dore 12–2 2–0
Semi Final   Ba 6–1 1–0 7–1
Final   Amicale 2–1
2013–14 OFC Champions League Group Stage   Nadi 3–0 2nd
  A.S. Dragon 3–0
  Amicale 1–0
Semi Final   A.S. Pirae 3–0 1–2 4–2
Final   Amicale 2–1 1–1 3–2
2014–15 OFC Champions League Group Stage   Suva 3–0 1st
  Western United 3–0
  Amicale 3–0
Semi Final   Gaïtcha FCN 1–0
Final   Team Wellington 1–1 (4–3 Pens.)
2016 OFC Champions League Group Stage   Lae City Dwellers 2–1 1st
  Solomon Warriors 4–0
  Amicale 3–1
Semi Final   A.S. Tefana 4–2
Final   Team Wellington 3–0
2017 OFC Champions League Group Stage   Lae City Dwellers 2–0 1st
  Western United 2–1
  Malampa Revivors 11–0
Semi Final   A.S. Tefana 2–0 2–0 4–0
Final   Team Wellington 3–0 2–0 5–0
2018 OFC Champions League Group Stage   Vénus 7–0 1st
  Madang 5–0
  Lautoka 1–0
Quarter Final   Solomon Warriors 2–0
Semi Final   Team Wellington 0–0 2–2 2–2
2019 OFC Champions League Group Stage   AS Magenta 2–1 1st
  Tupapa Maraerenga 15–0
  Solomon Warriors 6–0
Quarter Final   Toti City 4–0
Semi Final   AS Magenta 1–2

FIFA Club World CupEdit

Year FIFA Club World Cup Top goalscorer Managers
Country. Pl. W D L GS GA Place
2006 Japan 2 0 0 2 0 5 6th - 0   Allan Jones
2009 UAE 3 2 0 1 5 5 5th   Jason Hayne 2   Paul Posa
2011 Japan 1 0 0 1 0 2 7th - 0   Ramon Tribulietx
2012 Japan 1 0 0 1 0 1 7th - 0   Ramon Tribulietx
2013 Morocco 1 0 0 1 1 2 7th   Roy Krishna 1   Ramon Tribulietx
2014 Morocco 4 1 2 1 3 3 3rd Three Players 1   Ramon Tribulietx
2015 Japan 1 0 0 1 0 2 7th - 0   Ramon Tribulietx
2016 Japan 1 0 0 1 1 2 7th   Kim Dae-wook 1   Ramon Tribulietx
2017 UAE 1 0 0 1 0 1 7th - 0   Ramon Tribulietx

HonoursEdit

InternationalEdit

Bronze Medal (1): 2014

Oceanian

Champions (9): 2006, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017
Champions (1): 2014

NationalEdit

Premiers (10): 2004–05, 2005–06, 2009–10, 2011–12, 2013–14, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2016–17, 2017–18, 2018–19
Champions (7): 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2014, 2015, 2018
Champions (5): 2011–12, 2013–14, 2015–16, 2016–17, 2018–19
Champions (5): 2007, 2009, 2012, 2013, 2017

FriendliesEdit

Champions (1): 2017

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c "About Auckland City Football Club". Auckland City FC. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  2. ^ "National League". www.ultimatenzsoccer.com. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  3. ^ "Contact". Auckland City FC. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  4. ^ FIFA.com (8 May 2017). "Seventh heaven for Auckland City". FIFA.com. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  5. ^ a b "Auckland City FC win international praise for Club World Cup effort". Stuff. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  6. ^ FIFA.com. "FIFA Club World Cup Morocco 2014 - Matches - Cruz Azul-Auckland City FC". FIFA.com. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  7. ^ "NYL – Auckland City claim title". www.nzfootball.co.nz. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  8. ^ http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/sport/national/88525420/Auckland-FC-get-invite-to-prestigious-Hong-Kong-tournament
  9. ^ https://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/football/domestic/88958905/auckland-city-fc-lift-nike-lunar-new-year-cup-in-hong-kong
  10. ^ https://www.hkfa.com/en/match/28088
  11. ^ https://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/football/domestic/113267961/long-serving-auckland-city-fc-coach-ramon-tribulietx-leaves-club
  12. ^ https://www.aucklandcityfc.com/news/993/12/Jose-Figueira-named-Auckland-City-FC-coach-/
  13. ^ "Moghreb 0 Auckland 0". Goal.com. 10 December 2014. Retrieved 11 December 2014.
  14. ^ "Auckland sink Setif to book spot in semis". FIFA.com. FIFA. Retrieved 13 December 2014.
  15. ^ "'Maybe now they'll know me in Nigeria!' - Auckland City's Club World Cup hero Sanni Issa - Goal.com". www.goal.com. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  16. ^ FIFA.com. "FIFA Club World Cup UAE 2018 - News - Ramos outshines the rest - FIFA.com". www.fifa.com. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  17. ^ http://www.aucklandcityfc.com/players/premiership/
  18. ^ http://www.aucklandcityfc.com/news/1026/12/Tracey-penalty-save-inspires-friendly-win-/
  19. ^ http://www.aucklandcityfc.com/news/1017/12/Producing-players-is-our-aim-Kris-Bright-/

External linksEdit