Preview: Australia vs New Zealand – prediction, team news, line-ups

Sports Mole preview Sunday’s international friendlies clash between Australia and New Zealand, including predictions, team news and possible line-ups.

Australia and New Zealand will meet for the second time in a week on Sunday, as they battle in an international friendly match at Eden Park.

The Socceroos continued their preparations for the next World Cup with a 1-0 victory over neighbors Canberra on Thursday and will now go in search of a double.


Match preview

© Reuters

Australia went into Thursday’s opener with New Zealand on a high following their successful World Cup qualifying campaign and are looking to build on their momentum ahead of the tournament in Qatar, after beaten through several stages to reserve her place.

A dominant performance in their second round group of Asian qualifiers saw Graham ArnoldThe men progress to another group stage but, after struggling to keep pace with Saudi Arabia and Japan, missing out on automatic progression, the Socceroos faced two playoff games, first face the United Arab Emirates with a 2-1 victory. thanks to the goals of Jackson Irvin and Ajdin Hrustic.

This booked them an Inter-Confederation qualifier against Peru, with a group stage place in Qatar on the line, and after the game went scoreless for the full 90 minutes and extra time, it would go to a session. shots on goal that Arnold’s men finally prevailed. inasmuch as Andrew Redmayne saved two shots on goal.

They would return to action for the first time since booking their place at home against New Zealand on Thursday, and Arnold’s men managed to secure a narrow one-goal victory, as Awer MabilThe long shot proved to be the only difference between the two nations.

Heading now to Eden Park for their final outing before the tournament begins in November, Australia will be aiming to post another confidence-boosting result and claim a pair of wins over their rivals.

Australian coach Graham Arnold during the press conference on March 28, 2022© Reuters

The All Whites will be keen to prevent that from happening as they aim to bounce back from their own disappointment in the Inter-Confederation qualifiers after coming through Oceania World Cup qualifying with relative ease.

Having won their group with a perfect record, Danny HayThe team team beat Tahiti and the Solomon Islands in the knockout stage, the latter being beaten 5-0 to win their regional competition, but with no guaranteed World Cup spots for that leg, they faced the qualifiers against Costa Rica. .

Their opponents would go ahead in less than three minutes in Qatar thanks to Joel Campbell and defend their lead throughout, with a red card for Kosta Barbarous in the second half, further damaging the All Whites’ chances, as Hay’s side ultimately succumbed to a 1-0 defeat, falling agonizingly at the final hurdle in their bid to reach global competition for the first time since 2010.

Having also been unable to bounce back to winning ways in their first friendly against Australia, New Zealand will now hope to give their rivals a beating in the second home bid and start to restore confidence in the camp.

Australia competition form:

Australia form (all competitions):

New Zealand competition form:

New Zealand form (all competitions):


Team News

Australians Ajdin Hrustic and Trent Sainsbury react on March 24, 2022© Reuters

While Arnold will prioritize establishing his best squad for the World Cup over wholesale rotations, he can take the chance of a second friendly to take a closer look at more players from the club. team, with the likes of Connor Metcalfe, Riley McGree, Jamie MacLaren, Nathaniel Atkinson and Mathieu Leckie all coming off the bench in Game 1 and hoping for a chance from the start on Sunday.

Maclaren and Leckie could battle to lead the line in their 4-3-3 setup, while Awer Mabil’s decisive goal on Thursday should earn him another start, with Aaron Moy also likely to keep his place in the engine room as one of the Socceroos’ key men.

He could be joined by McGree and Metcalfe, while the centre-back duo Milos Degenek and Trent Sainsbury is less likely to break up given the relative youth of their partnership prior to the start of the group stage.

New Zealand Captain Winston Reid was left on the bench for Thursday’s friendly, given the lack of competitive football he has played since leaving West Ham United last year, with Michael Boxall, Nando Pijnaker and Tim Payne favorite at the heart of Danny Hay’s defense.

Elsewhere, the Newcastle United striker Chris Wood is bound to continue leading the line, with his 33 international goals being the most in All Whites history.

He was joined by Andre de Jong the last time, but Ben Waine will have his eyes on the point of attack alongside Wood, with just elias providing additional support in the final third.

Possible starting lineup for Australia:
Ryan; Atkinson, Degenek, Sainsbury, Behich; McGree, Mooy, Metcalfe; Mabil, Leckie, Boyle

Possible starting line-up from New Zealand:
Navigate; Ingham, Tuiloma, Boxall, Pijnaker, Cacace; Bell, Garbett; Just; Waine, Wood


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We say: Australia 2-0 New Zealand

Australia still have a lot to do in the coming months, and in the build-up to their final match before the World Cup, Arnold will be looking forward to seeing a solid performance from his Socceroos side who should have enough to triumph again. of his rivals.

For a data analysis of the most likely outcomes, scores and more for this match, please click here.


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