Category Archives: New Zealand

2010 World Cup Preview: Group F

Group F: Italy, Paraguay, Slovakia, New Zealand

The Lowdown

Reigning World Cup champions Italy head Group F alongside Paraguay, Slovakia, and New Zealand. The Italian side will look to win back-to-back World Cup titles, a feat that hasn’t been accomplished since Brazil did so back in 1958 and 1962.

Paraguay are becoming perennial World Cup participants and will also feature in Group F. After a disappointing first round exit in Germany, the Paraguayans will want to at least get out of this group.

They will be challenged by Slovakia, a team making their first World Cup appearance (first since the break-up of Czechoslovakia). New Zealand back at the tournament after a 28-year absence round out the teams in a quite appealing group.

 

What Should Happen

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2010 World Cup Preview: New Zealand

THE SKINNY

 

New Zealand is back at the World Cup following a 28-year absence as the All Whites capitalized on Australia’s move to Asia by winning their Oceania section and then defeating Bahrain in a two-legged play-off back in November. They enter the tournament as huge underdogs and anything positive that they can achieve in Group F alongside Italy, Paraguay, and Slovakia will be considered a superb achievement. Getting to the tournament was the goal and anything extra in South Africa will seen as a success. But, with nothing to lose could New Zealand spring a surprise or two?

 

TALE OF THE TAPE

FIFA Ranking: 78th

World Cup Appearances: 1 (1982)

World Cup Record (W-D-L): 0-0-3

Best World Cup Finish: Group Stage

Road To South Africa: Oceania Qualifier, Defeated Bahrain in Play-off

 

ANALYSIS

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