Story: Football

Ryan Nelsen, 2005

A man in a blue and white football uniform leaps to kick a ball during a football game in a stadium while being chased by players from his team and the opposing team.

Ryan Nelsen, centre, plays as a defender in Blackburn Rovers' game against Manchester United at Old Trafford on 24 September 2005. In front of a crowd of 67,765, Blackburn won 2–1. Nelsen entered professional football in the United States and then became the third New Zealander to play in England's premier league. In this image Nelsen is flanked by Manchester United players Rio Ferdinand (left) and Mikael Silvestre. Nelsen captained the All Whites at the 2010 World Cup finals, and also Blackburn Rovers. He subsequently joined Tottenham Hotspur and Queen's Park Rangers before becoming, in 2013, the head coach of the Toronto Football Club in North America's Major League Soccer competition.

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Reference: 55763083
Photograph by Ross Kinnaird

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Photograph use authorised by kind permission of the Premier League in England.

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How to cite this page:

Neill Atkinson, Steve Watters and Alida Shanks, 'Football - Men's professional football', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 25 June 2024)

Story by Neill Atkinson, Steve Watters and Alida Shanks, published 5 Sep 2013, reviewed & revised 7 Jun 2023 with assistance from Alida Shanks