New Zealand Football (NZF) is reviewing its “All Whites” nickname as part of a cultural project run by the organization.
The moniker was attributed to the men’s national side during the country’s successful qualifying campaign for the 1982 FIFA World Cup, according to reports, due to the team’s all-white kit.
But NZF, the country’s football governing body, said it had sought feedback from stakeholders about whether all areas of the federation were still “fit for purpose.”
“As with many other national bodies, New Zealand Football is on a journey around cultural inclusivity and respecting the principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi,” read a NZF statement, referring to the treaty signed between the British crown and Maori chiefs in 1840.
“As part of our Delivery and Sustainability Project announced last year, we are in the process of working with stakeholders across the game, as well as people from outside football, looking at all areas of the organization to make sure they are fit for purpose in 2021 and beyond.
“It is too early in the process to speak about any outcomes but this is an important piece of work as we strive to be the most inclusive sport in Aotearoa.”
The New Zealand women’s team is nicknamed the “Football Ferns,” while the country’s men’s rugby team is famously called the “All Blacks” after its iconic black kit.
NZF’s review comes after a number of other sports teams have revisited their brand in recent years.
The NFL’s Washington Football Team decided to drop its “Redskins” moniker after a “thorough review.” The name had long been denounced by Native American groups as an ethnic slur.
Elsewhere, one of New Zealand’s top rugby union teams – the Crusaders – also scrapped its knight and sword logo after a review in the wake of the Christchurch terror attack in 2019.