“I’m delighted to be given the challenge of qualifying the Football Ferns for the World Cup in France next year,” he said from Orlando.

“During my time in coaching I’ve always had a close relationship with the team and I am very pleased to have the opportunity to lead the program during this exciting time.”

Boyens said that it was important that Sermanni had coached at the highest level of women’s football – with good success with the Matildas and the World No 1 USA.  He took the Matildas to two Women’s World Cup quarterfinals. 

“Tom has the experience to bring the group together in a short time frame in order to perform to their potential during qualifying and if successful, on to the 2019 Women’s World Cup,” said the former All White.

“He has a good understanding of that current playing group that will enable him to hit the ground running. He also has a passion for football in this part of the world and will be a great cultural fit for New Zealand Football and the Football Ferns.”

Former Football Ferns defender Kristy Hill said the NZPFA endorsed Sermanni’s appointment.

“It was important to us that NZ Football ran a process to find the best available person for this role," said Hill.

"Not only were we able to secure someone of such high calibre as Tom, but it confirmed that there are some amazing coaches with directly relevant experience who want to coach the Ferns."