Smith and Patterson's All Whites Host Peru in World Cup Play-Off First Leg
Friday, 10th Nov 2017 17:10
Tommy Smith and Monty Patterson’s New Zealand face Peru in the first leg of their World Cup qualification play-off in Wellington overnight.
Speaking earlier in the week, Smith, who is set to starts at the centre of the defence, said the All Whites camp were “quietly confident” ahead of the games which have a place at next summer’s finals in Russia as their prize.
The 27-year-old believes the pressure could get to the Peruvians, who are 10th in FIFA’s rankings, with the New Zealanders currently 122nd.
"We know what they're going to offer and we think if we can get on top at home especially, then the pressure might get to them,” he said.
"We've been well versed in how they're going to play and how we're going to combat their strengths and exploit their weaknesses.”
New Zealand won the Oceania World Cup qualification process, while Peru finished fifth in the South American qualifying group. The second leg is in Lima on Wednesday.
Smith, who has been capped 35 times, scoring twice, previously represented the All Whites at the 2010 finals in South Africa and also played for an U23s team at the 2012 London Olympics.
Midfielder or striker Patterson, 20, has won 15 caps and has scored one international goal. Also in the squad are former Town loan frontmen Chris Wood and Rory Fallon.
Photo: Action Images
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