New Zealand vs Peru
FIFA World Cup – Inter- Continental Play-off
Date: Friday, 10th November 2017
Kick off at 3:15 UK/ 4:15 CET
Venue: Westpac Stadium (Wellington).
Peru start as heavy favorites in the World Cup inter-continental play-off tie against New Zealand.
New Zealand qualified for the play-offs after beating Solomon Islands 8-3 on aggregate in a double legged tie. They are the only seeded team in the Oceania zone where there is little competition as compared to rest of the continental federations.
The All-Whites got a chance to lock horns with some strong teams in the FIFA Confederations earlier this year. They were eliminated from the group phase losing all three matches to Russia (0-2), Mexico (1-2) and Portugal (0-4). The team also played a friendly against Japan in the October window; falling to a 2-1 defeat by a late goal.
New Zealand had previously qualified for the World Cup in 2010 by defeating Bahrain in the play-off by a solitary goal at their home turf.
Peru are looking to return to the final tournament for the first time since 1982. And this is the first time that they are being part of a play-off knockout tie.
The La Blanquirroja achieved this feat this time by finishing fifth in the qualification table with a strong run towards the end of the campaign. They were no where near the qualification zone during the first half, but a 6 match unbeaten run with 3 wins and 3 draws had given them another shot.
New Zealand vs Peru: Head-to-head
This will be the first official meeting between New Zealand and Peru.
New Zealand: Team News
The All-Whites have a fully fit squad to choose them for the first leg fixture against Peru.
The head-coach Anthony Hudson had called up Rory Fallon, the 35 year old veteran who scored the lone goal in the successful campaign against Bahrain back in 2010. Jeremy Brockie is another played recalled from international retirement.
New Zealand Predicted Line-up (5-3-2)
Marinovic – Ried, Smith, Durante, Wynne, Boxall – Thomas, Rojas, McGlinchey – Barbarouses, Wood.
Peru: Team News
The main absentee for Peru is their star striker Paolo Guerrero, who may miss both legs due to a doping ban.
The veteran Jefferson Farfan could play as a make-shift striker after being used in a similar role at his club Lokomotiv Moscow.
Peru: Predicted Line-up (4-2-3-1)
Gallese – Corzo, Rodriguez, Ramos, Trauco – Yotun, Tapia – Carillo, Cueva, Flores – Farfan.
New Zealand vs Peru: Predictions
There is little doubt that New Zealand are no match for the flamboyant Peru on paper. And punters must not hesitate to back an away win when it is priced at a healthy 1.75 odd.