Football World Cup: Football Ferns ramp up preparation with Iceland, Nigeria friendlies in Turkey

The Football Ferns will play international friendlies against Iceland and Nigeria in April, as preparations ramp up for the World Cup.

Both fixtures will take place in Turkey, with the match against Iceland on April 8 (NZT) and the match against Nigeria on April 12.

The games will serve as their last overseas fixtures before they assemble back home in May for the home World Cup.

New Zealand are still chasing their first win since September, riding a five-match losing streak that includes heavy defeats against USA and Portugal.

Their challenge doesn't get any easier against Iceland, who have a world ranking of 16th, eight places above the Ferns.

Nigeria should provide the best opportunity for a result, with the African giants ranked a much-lower 45th.

Ferns head coach Jitka Klimková believes the friendlies will serve them well, as they continue to build to the World Cup.

Football Ferns in action against Argentina.
Football Ferns in action against Argentina. Photo credit: Image - Photosport

"These are two good sides and a great test for us going into the tournament," she said. "We played Iceland just over a year ago, so this game presents a good opportunity to see how we have been progressing. 

"We were also keen to face an African side, so that we have challenged ourselves against every other confederation, and Nigeria are the perfect opponent. 

"As a team, we were disappointed with the results against Portugal and Argentina, so I know everyone is keen to get back on the pitch to show what we can do."