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Overview

The Junior Football Ferns are New Zealand's national U-20 women's football side and are current champions of Oceania.

The team sealed a fourth straight World Cup appearance by qualifying for Japan 2012 with wins over Papua New Guinea, New Caledonia and Samoa at the OFC U-20 Women's Championship in Auckland in April 2012.

At the Junior Football Ferns' inaugural appearance at the 2006 U-20 Women's World Cup in Russia, New Zealand drew 0-0 with eventual bronze-medalists Brazil to claim what was then just the second ever result by a kiwi side at a World Cup.

Two years later in Chile, the John Herdman coached side went a couple of steps better, defeating the hosts in pool play and going within seconds of achieving an historic victory over England, who found an 94th minute equaliser to advance at the Junior Football Ferns expense.

Tony Readings took the side to Germany in 2010 where the Junior Football Ferns suffered 1-2 loses to Sweden and North Korea before a 1-4 loss at the hands of Brazil ended their campaign.

In 2012, Aaron McFarland took the helm and New Zealand were successful in their opening match against Switzerland 2-1, before a creditable 2-2 draw with the hosts Japan.

The results left New Zealand needing a draw in their final group match with Mexico to become the first women's age group side to progress to the knockout stages of a World Cup.

The final match did not go the Junior Football Ferns way and hearts were broken in the 0-4 defeat to El Tri to advance at New Zealand's expense once more.

2012 Junior Football Ferns

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