New Zealand set to meet Concacaf team in playoff

[WORLD CUP 2014 QUALIFYING: Oceania] Defender Tommy Smith scored in the fourth minute of stoppage time to give New Zealand a 2-1 win over New Caledonia on Friday and clinch a berth for the All Whites as the Oceania winners in a two-leg intercontinental playoff against Concacaf's fourth-place team in November.

New Zealand, which is 5-0-0 after five games and holds a six-point lead over New Caledonia, had taken the lead on Chris Killen's header in the 10th minute, but Cesar Lolohea equalized 11 minutes into the second half.

"It was a hard slog, luckily we found something at the last minute," Smith told New Zealand's RadioSport. "Tonight we didn't play the best but at the end of the day the result is what matters."

The All Whites won a playoff with Bahrain to qualify for the World Cup for only the second time in 2010.

Oceania Standings:
New Zealand 2 New Caledonia 1
PTS Standings W T L +/-
15 New Zealand 5-0-0 15-2
9 New Caledonia 3-0-2 16-6
3 Solomon Islands 1-0-3 5-17
0 Tahiti 0-0-4 0-11

Next story loading loading..

Discover Our Publications