25 May 2016

All Whites lose Smeltz for Oceania Nations Cup

7:21 am on 25 May 2016

The All Whites striker Shane Smeltz has been ruled out of the Oceania Nations Cup with a recurring foot injury.

The 34-year-old has Smeltz who's scored 24 goals in his 51 games for New Zealand is suffering from plantar fascia and has been managing the problem during the A-League season.

New Zealand football international Shane Smeltz.

Shane Smeltz. Photo: Photosport

All Whites coach Anthony Hudson decided it was not worth risking further injury to Smeltz and has replaced him with attacking midfielder Luka Prelevic.

"We have been monitoring him (Smeltz) for quite a few weeks now and it has been causing him a lot of problems. He has been having injections and is not right.

"We need him fit, and it ultimately wouldn't be good for us and it wouldn't be good for him if we forced him here."

Prelevic was a member of the All Whites U-23 squad who played in Papua New Guinea last year and featured in the team's opening 2-0 win in the training game against Brisbane club side Western Pride FC.

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