26 Jun 2010

All Whites depart World Cup with mixed emotions

10:07 am on 26 June 2010

The All Whites have narrowly missed out on a place in the last 16 at the World Cup, but coach Ricki Herbert says no one could be prouder than him of the team's achievements in South Africa.

The All Whites drew nil-all with Paraguay on Thursday to go through the group stage unbeaten, finishing third behind Paraguay and Slovakia, but ahead of the world champions Italy.

Skipper Ryan Nelsen, who played the final match with a stomach ailment, was shattered by the end, saying he felt like apologising to the whole country for not quite making the knockout phase.

The results mean the two finalists from the last tournament, Italy and France, were both eliminated after group play.