TOMMY Smith says playing at another World Cup would be another 'unbelievable' experience.

But the Colchester United skipper admits he will not get too excited about the prospect of playing in Qatar 2022 until the job is done.

Smith has linked up again with the New Zealand squad in Marbella this week, as they begin their preparations for their crucial upcoming Intercontinental Play-Off against Costa Rica, on June 14.

The 32-year-old U's defender will be part of the All Whites squad gearing up for warm-up games against Peru in Barcelona next Sunday and Oman in Doha, on June 9.


Smith previously played every minute of the 2010 World Cup for New Zealand in South Africa.

Now 12 years on - and with 47 caps under his belt - the experienced centre-back admits it would be great to play in another major tournament for his country.

Smith said: "I was very young, the last time I played in a World Cup.

"I was a 20-year-old kid really and you didn't really appreciate at the time what you're actually doing, what we accomplished as a team whilst we were there.

"This time around, we're much more experienced and if if we can make it there again, it would be unbelievable for me and my family.


"Hopefully we can get over the line.

"We fancy our chances and we'll go into it confidently, knowing that they're a decent outfit and a good side but knowing that we can get that job done.

"I don't think you'd be human if you hadn't thought about the World Cup a little bit, especially when the groups came out and you're watching the draw and you can see that we could be coming up against Germany, Spain and Japan, if we get through this game.

"So of course there's excitement on the one hand but also knowing that there's a job to be done, before you can let yourself get too excited about it."

Smith has been a constant in the New Zealand squad this season, helping them battle their way to the Intercontinental Play-Off.

The former Ipswich Town defender is one of their most experienced players and says he always enjoys linking up with the All Whites.


"I've really enjoyed going away, into that environment," said Smith, who made his New Zealand debut against Mexico in March, 2010.

"It's quite a young group and there are some really good young players.

"A lot of them ply their trade around Europe, there are some that are based in the A League and some in America.


"So to get that group together and perform as well as we have been recently has been really encouraging.

"Credit to the staff when we go away to make it cohesive so quickly and in such a short space of time.

"It must be really difficult for them.

"It's an honour and a privilege every time you represent your country."