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Departing Wellington Phoenix midfielder Daniel eligible to represent New Zealand

Brazilian-born midfielder Daniel Lins Cortes is now eligible to represent the New Zealand national team.

The 32-year old winger, who will not be re-signed by the Wellington Phoenix after five years of service, has confirmed that he can now play for the All Whites if selected by head coach Ricki Herbert.

"When my family left I had to stay another 10 days to complete my five years," Daniel said.

"The five years is up on May 14 and what was 10 days after being here for five years?

"I've spoken to New Zealand Football and they told me FIFA have approved my application (to be eligible for the All Whites) which is fantastic.

"Now it is up to Ricki (Herbert, All Whites coach) whether I am picked to play but the main thing is I will be available."

And Daniel added that there are a couple of clubs interested in his services, including Melbourne Heart, who recently appointed John Aloisi as their new coach.

"Heart, where John Aloisi has taken over as coach, have asked if I am interested and I am sure we will talk some more," he added.

"But the main thing is that I will soon be available for the All Whites and I think I would be able to play against El Salvador and Honduras later this month if Ricki wants me.

"I have loved my time in Wellington and have had five fantastic years. It will be very tough to leave but hopefully I will be able to keep my New Zealand links through the All Whites."

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Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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