New Caledonia (NCL)
FIFA’s newest member in Oceania - having been affiliated only in 2004 despite a long history of football in the French-speaking Melanesian nation - go into the Brazil 2014 qualifiers as South Pacific champions. They were crowned in 2007 in the tournament which doubled as 2010 FIFA World Cup™ qualifying.
The current crop
New Caledonia have played irregular matches against fellow French-speaking Oceania nations Tahiti and Vanuatu since the last FIFA World Cup campaign four years ago, with results suggesting little is between the trio. A relatively consistent record in continental youth championships indicates the talent production line is continuing to provide some depth for the senior team.
The key players
Captain Pierre Wajoka has unquestionably been the leading figure in Caledonian football over the past decade, with the attacking midfielder having the honour of scoring the globe's first 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying goal. Another major player going forward will be midfielder Caesar Lolohea, who recently signed a professional contract at Stade Laval in France’s Ligue 2.
Coach: Christophe Coursimault
Best performance in a FIFA competition: None
Former stars: Marc Kanyan, Gilles Tavergeux, Gerald Delmas