Five months after bowing out of the Fifa Women's World Cup following a feisty 2-2 draw against China, the Football Ferns are ready to step back into the international arena.

The 16th-ranked New Zealand side meet Brazil (7) in Sao Paulo in the first of two matches on Sunday morning (NZ time) and the short term focus is results, but the long term focus is the Rio Olympics.

The Football Ferns face a qualification playoff against Papua New Guinea in January to secure their berth at the games and the series against Brazil will be their last friendly before the home and away tie.

"I think everyone is really excited to get back together and learn from what we did at the World Cup and move forward," said Ferns striker Rosie White.


White, who scored the New Zealand goal in a drawn series between the two sides on home soil in 2014, says this two-match test offers a great chance to continue the hunt for improvement; specifically in and around the opposition penalty area.

"We've got such a great structure and such a great a team environment, I think it's more the specific details that are going to push us on a little bit further. In its essence, it is things on the field that need to be better.

"We've played Brazil a few times and other South American teams and they bring something completely different to the table," White said.

"It's sometimes a little bit unpredictable which is not what we're used to but I think it's important to play these games and replicate whatever might get thrown at us at World Cups and Olympic Games."

Ferns coach Tony Readings said the series against Brazil in Brazil will give his squad valuable experience playing in the conditions they will face, if they qualify for the Olympics.

"We will be implementing several changes during this tour as we work towards continuing the progression of the team.

"The World Cup provided us with some excellent learnings and it is now down to the whole group to put these into place and ruthlessly pursue the performance improvements we require."

The Football Ferns recorded their first win over Brazil at the Valais Cup in Switzerland in 2013 before 1-1 and 0-0 draws in New Zealand last year. The other recent match-up was a 1-0 defeat to the South Americans at the 2012 London Olympics.


Football Ferns v Brazil
Saturday 28 November, 3.30pm (Sunday 29 November, 6.30am - NZ time)
Estádio do Pacaembu
Sao Paulo, Brazil
LIVE on SKY Sport

Football Ferns v Brazil
Tuesday 1 December, 9pm (Wednesday 2 December, 1pm - NZ time)
Arena Pantanal
Cuiaba, Brazil
LIVE on SKY Sport