Malia Steinmetz Parents: New Zealanders Father And Samoan Mother

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The New Zealand international Malia Steinmetz comes from a mixed heritage, and her journey to become a woman of influence is deeply rooted in her diverse and unique background. Let’s have a look at her inside story.

Steinmetz grew up with conflicting feelings of not fully belonging to either culture. It left her feeling lost and unsure of how to respond to her heritage. 

It was only when she connected with her identity she found comfort in being a role model for other individuals in the football community.

Malia Steinmetz Is A Midfielder For The Ferns
Malia Steinmetz Is A Midfielder For The Ferns (Source: NZ Herald)

Malia Steinmetz, who is a midfielder for the New Zealand women’s national team (the Football Ferns), currently plays for Western Sydney Wanderers in Australia. 

The Auckland native Steinmetz is also prominent for her ability to read the game and her intuitive sense of ball movement and strategic play.

Growing up in Ōnehunga, the athlete started playing when she was 5 years old and eventually became one of the greatest players for Mt Albert Grammar School.

The athlete, who was born and raised in Nehunga, began playing when she was 5 years old and eventually became a great player for Mt Albert Grammar School.

Prior to this, the Western Sydney Wanderers’ midfielder began her profession as a youngster with Three Kings United. She played for Forrest Hill Milford United before heading to Australia in 2019.

Likewise, the prominent figure in the world of women’s football went from amateur to semi-professional with the Perth Glory in the A-League.

The midfielder played her second season for Western Sydney Wanderers after her move from Perth Glory in 2021-22.

Malia Steinmetz Parents: A Proud Kiwi-Samoan Heritage

In the realm of international soccer, Malia Steinmetz has emerged as a promising talent. She garnered attention and admiration for her exceptional skills on the field.

Steinmetz was born to a New Zealander’s father and a Samoan mother, Paula. However, her upbringing has been Kiwi.

Although Steinmetz is proud of her half-Samoan and half-Kiwi heritage, her journey to the top was not straightforward.

The rising pressure in soccer, coupled with her own questions about her identity and sense of belonging as a Samoan-Kiwi, was challenging. 

Even though she wanted to be identified as Samoan at times, the feeling of not fully embracing it made her feel disconnected.

She became very lost, not knowing what she was doing and who she was. So much so that she ditched soccer for almost six months in 2018. 

Malia With Her Grandmother At Her FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup 2018 Shirt Presentation
Malia With Her Grandmother At Her FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup 2018 Shirt Presentation (Source: NZ Football)

It was during the hiatus the former Three Kings United player had the opportunity to reflect on her passion for the game and what it meant to her.

Trying to connect with her identity and her Samoan roots has been really important as she gained a deeper understanding of herself.

Recently, Steinmetz got a traditional Samoan “tatau” on her right hand with her mum and grandmother.

This experience helped her to connect with her identity and embed a sense of knowing who she is and where she comes from. 

With the hard-fought sense of belonging, Steinmetz has flourished in soccer. She’s also rediscovered the sense of love and fun in the game.

National Team Career

Steinmetz had her start in international football in the U-17 squad at the 2016 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup.

She went on to be part of the U-20 squad at the 2016 and 2018 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cups.

However, the turning point came when she made her senior international debut as a substitute in 2017 against Thailand on November 28.

Malia Steinmetz After Defeat Against The Philipines
Malia Steinmetz After Defeat Against The Philippines (Source: PHOTOSPORT)

Steinmetz was a part of New Zealand’s squad for the 2023 Women’s World Cup on home soil. The midfielder started in all three fixtures for the Ferns in the series.

Unfortunately, the host nation got knocked out from the Women’s World Cup group stages after its 0-0 draw against Switzerland on Sunday.

Swochandra Shrestha
Swochandra Shrestha

Swochandra Shrestha

Swochandra Shrestha is a passionate writer with a keen eye for uncovering the human stories behind the world of sports. His articles offer readers a refreshing perspective on athletes and sporting events, blending insightful analysis with engaging storytelling that resonates on a personal level.


Media Critique Sports Tourism


  • Swochandra explores the intersection of sports and travel.
  • He reflects on the ways in which sports intersect with individual and collective identities.


Swochandra seeks to foster a deeper appreciation for the human stories and cultural dynamics that animate the world of sports, inspiring readers to engage more deeply with the games they love.

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