The association is a member of the East Asian Football Federation. In the late 1990s a Northern Mariana Islands national side competed in the Micronesian Games (Teams were 9-a-side and the matches were 80 minutes in duration and were played on a pitch which was below regulation size.). In December 2006, the EAFF admitted the Northern Mariana Islands as a provisional member, granting full membership in September 2008.
Lucas Knecht featured for the Northern Mariana Islands Football Association on April 1, 2007 in an East Asian Football Federation Championship Qualifier versus Guam. Knecht was 14 years and 2 days old at the time making him the youngest male player to ever appear in an international match.
In July 2009 The AFC Exco agreed to accept the Northern Mariana Islands Football Association (NMIFA) as an Associate Member of the Asian Football Confederation, after the association resigned from the Oceania Football Confederation in June 2009, paving the way to join AFC. The NMIFA will be a provisional member until the next AFC Congress, when it has the chance to be ratified as a permanent Associate Member.
On June 19, 2010 the NMI earned a 1–1 draw with neighbor Guam in the 2010 Marianas Cup. The match ended in a draw as there was insufficient lighting to continue the match after the end of regulation. Joe Wang Miller scored for the NMI in the 68th minute and Jason Cunliffe answered in the 89th minute to salvage a draw for Guam.
The Northern Mariana Islands scored their first ever international win on July 23, 2014 in the preliminary round of the 2015 EAFF Championships held in Hagatna, Guam. The Blue Ayuyus had goals from Nick Swaim and Kirk Schuler to beat Macau, 2 to 1.