New Zealand Football is excited to launch the ISPS Handa Premiership for the 2017 – 18 season today in Auckland.
The launch which will be staged at QBE Stadium, the venue of the ISPS Handa Premiership Final on 1 April 2018, sees a representative from each of the 10 national league clubs in Auckland to get ready for the opening round on 22 October.
New Zealand Football CEO Andy Martin said the governing body is looking forward to the start of the ISPS Handa Premiership in October which continues to grow in quality.
“The ISPS Handa Premiership has the tagline of “Where All Whites are made” and it is a pathway that is possible for every Kiwi player in our national league,” said Martin.
The CEO said it was great to see a player like Clayton Lewis, who has been an Auckland City FC rep for the last few years, competing with the best players in the world like Cristiano Ronaldo at the FIFA Confederations Cup in June.
“Not only did Clayton compete on the world stage, but he set up the goal for Chris Wood in the second game against Mexico – he showed what is possible from the ISPS Handa Premiership.”
There is good representation of All Whites again in the 2017 – 2018 ISPS Handa Premiership.
There are 14 current or former All Whites – Lewis, Te Atawhai Hudson Wihongi, Tim Payne, Jake Butler, Liam Graham, Kris Bright, Aaron Clapham, Aaron Scott, Clayton Lewis, Logan Rogerson, Jacob Spoonley, Ryan De Vries, Ian Hogg, Joel Stevens and Cole Peverley – competing in this year’s competition.
Former All Whites coach Ricki Herbert and NZ U-17 coach Danny Hay are also in the ISPS Handa Premiership this season coaching Hamilton Wanderers and Eastern Suburbs respectively.
New Zealand Football has two key strategic aims; to have more New Zealanders playing and loving football and secondly to have its elite teams winning at global pinnacle events. The ISPS Handa Premiership is important because it brings those two strategic objectives together.
The ISPS Handa Premiership is contested by 10 teams around New Zealand – Auckland City, Eastern Suburbs, Waitakere United, Hamilton Wanderers, Hawke’s Bay United, Team Wellington, Wellington Phoenix U-20s, Tasman United, Canterbury United and Southern United.
The competition consists of 18 rounds – home and away fixtures for each club – with semi-finals to be staged on the weekend of 24 – 25 March and the ISPS Handa Premiership Final to be held on 1 April at QBE Stadium in Auckland.
Across 20 weeks of the ISPS Handa Premiership season, there will be 23 games broadcast live on SKY Sport with a post-match review show. There will also an ISPS Handa Premiership highlights show on Tuesday night throughout the season.
New Zealand Football is very appreciative of the support of new naming rights sponsor ISPS Handa and also funding partner Trillian Trust who continue to support the competition and make it financially sustainable for all teams.
ISPS Handa Premiership 2017 – 18 Launch
When: 27 September, 10:45am – 12pm
Where: Media Room, QBE Stadium, Albany
What: The 10 national league clubs from the ISPS Handa Premiership launching the competition