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On June 14, New Zealand will kick off its tournament with the defending Euro 2008 champions Spain at 2:30 at the Royal Bafokeng Stadium in Rustenburg. They will be joined in Group A with South Africa and Iraq.


On that date, New Zealand will look to show that they truly deserve a place in the football world. The All Whites earned qualification via the overlooked Oceania region, and many would argue that they are only here because of Australia's move to the Asian region. But that is exactly the point that New Zealand will look to disprove. This team isn't in a terrible group. They could come out of it. So, with all this in mind, let's take a closer look at the team.


Strength- The strike core is the strength of this side. They aren't all too strong anywhere else, so this is the easy choice. They have Chris Killen (Celtic) and the youngster Chris Wood (West Bromwich Albion {he's 17}).


Weakness- The defence is a huge weakness. Without the help of Blackburn Rovers captain Ryan Nelsen, the All Whites may be in trouble. Even with Nelsen, they were pretty bad defensively, so this does not appear to be good for New Zealand.


Player to Watch- Chris Killen. This man is going to be the man to watch because he's really the only man on the team with real experience scoring goals in semi-big matches. He will need to score if New Zealand are to do well at all.


Prediction- Even with the underdog nature of this side and the weakness of the group, one has to believe that New Zealand just don't have enough. In a lackluster group, the All Whites finish in 4th place with 0 points.


 

 

 

 

 

Thanks, it's been Keeper and I'm out.



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