The cost to New Zealand Football of the Deklan Wynne eligibility saga may come to be measured in the millions.
On top of the immediate fallout of their disqualification from the 2015 Pacific Games — the embarrassment and damaged reputation, the uncertainty over the international future of Wynne (and others), the strained relationship with the Oceania Football Confederation — there are some medium-term consequences that could have financial repercussions.
The Oly-Whites squad next year under Anthony Hudson was going to resemble a shadow All Whites unit, with Tyler Boyd, Ryan Thomas, Tim Payne plus the likes of Winston Reid, Michael McGlinchey and Chris Wood (as over-age players) added to the core that were in Papua New Guinea. On qualification, that team was guaranteed five to six top-class matches, with at least three at the Olympics as well as warm-up games. Under that scenario, almost all costs were covered.
An equivalent series of matches would cost up to $1.5 million to arrange but also — as past experience has shown — games with top-class nations might be out of reach for NZF, outside of such a tournament setting. Aside from the costs, the new travel restrictions imposed during Fifa windows make it extremely difficult.
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Then there are other costs. The Olympics was seen as the crucial plank in Hudson's strategy. Not being there makes the the path to the 2017 Confederations Cup and World Cup that much harder.
"There is a massive financial cost but also a huge opportunity cost," said former NZF chief executive Grant McKavanagh. "It's hard to measure but imagine the development opportunities for players on that stage, the chance of being spotted and picking up professional contracts? It's a huge shame."
However, McKavanagh has some sympathy. "Eligibility is a very complex area and it's quite possible the same mistake could have eventuated when I was there."
Meanwhile, mystery still surrounds the make-up of the OFC disciplinary committee that made the decision over Wynne. An OFC release stated that the committee is an "independent judicial body ... comprised of individuals who do not hold office, nor have any vested interest with any OFC Member Associations".
That might imply that none of the committee members are based in, or have links with any OFC countries. However, when the Herald on Sunday enquired about their identities, an OFC spokeswoman said "the names of the committee will be released at the same time as the [original] written decision [is released]."