This weekend's O-League clash between Auckland City and Waitakere
United will be one of the last opportunities for World Cup hopefuls to
New Zealand coach Ricki Herbert and his assistant Brian Turner have
confirmed their attendance at the crucial Group A decider which kicks
off at 3:00pm on Sunday at Kiwitea Street in Sandringham.
Auckland City midfielder Chad Coombes made his All Whites debut
against Mexico earlier this month and says he is hoping to back that
up with another good performance.
"This is a massive game for so many reasons. I just want to play well,
not make too many mistakes and keep my cool," says the 26-year-old PE
The versatile Coombes, who has played at full-back, right midfield and
striker, says he doesn't mind where he plays this Sunday.
"Against Waitakere I usually prefer playing up front and I've scored
in the last two games against them. But if I'm in a defensive role
then I'll be up against Roy (Krishna) or Benji (Totori) so that will
be a good test of my abilities."
Teammate Jason Hayne also had a late call up for the one-off match
against Mexico but was not used by Herbert during the 2-0 loss. The
23-year-old midfielder will be keen to impress along with outside
hopefuls James Pritchett and Jacob Spoonley while veteran central
defender Ivan Vicelich will want a strong showing after missing the
last All Whites match through suspension.
In the Waitakere camp, full-back Aaron Scott says he's not going to
think too much about who is watching from the sideline.
"Obviously it's at the back of your mind but what's at the forefront
is playing well and ensuring we win the match," says the
Hamilton-based defender who has five caps for New Zealand.
Scott was a substitute in both World Cup qualifying matches against
Bahrain but was not selected for the Mexico match. The 23-year-old
says the disappointment of missing that match has given him extra
motivation to improve his game.
"I've been doing a lot of work aiming to peak for this match and I'd
like to say I'm close to hitting my best form."
Strikers Brent Fisher and Alan Pearce, who have been involved in New
Zealand teams in the past, will also be out to prove a point this
Waitakere player-coach Neil Emblem is delighted Herbert will be at the
match and says it will be the perfect opportunity for players to stake
"I believe players at this level should be looked at and the All
Whites management must think the same otherwise they wouldn't be
coming on Sunday," said Emblen.
"It would be fantastic if we can get players from both clubs to earn
selection for New Zealand and go on to play at the biggest football
competition in the world."
Auckland City FC [NZL] vs. Waitakere United [NZL]
Sunday 28 March 2010
Auckland, New Zealand
Local kick-off: 15H00
Referee: Norbert HAUATA [TAH]
Assistant Referee 1: Brent BEST [TAH]
Assistant Referee 2: Mark RULE [NZL]
Fourth Official: Mirko BENISCHKE [NZL]
Auckland City FC: 1. Jacob SPOONLEY [GK], 3. Ian HOGG, 4. Sam
CAMPBELL, 5. Matt WILLIAMS, 6. Ki-Hyung LEE, 7. James PRITCHETT, 8.
Chad COOMBES, 9. Paul URLOVIC, 10. Grant YOUNG, 11. Daniel KOPRIVCIC,
13. Alex FENERIDIS, 15. Ivan VICELICH, 16. Jason HAYNE, 18. Paul
GOTHARD [GK], 20. Greg UHLMANN, 21. Ricky VAN STEEDEN, 22. Adam
DICKINSON, 24. Luis CORRALES.
Coach: Paul POSA [NZL]
Waitakere United: 1. Danny ROBINSON [GK], 2. Jason ROWLEY, 3. Aaron
SCOTT, 4. Tim MEYERS, 7. Martin BULLOCK, 8. Brent FISHER, 9. Benjamin
TOTORI, 10. Alan PEARCE, 11. Neil SYKES, 12. Roy KRISHNA, 16. Neil
EMBLEN, 17. Jake BUTLER, 18. Zane SOLE, 19. Dakota SOLAS, 20. Ryan DE
VRIES, 21. Jack PELTER, 22. Liam LITTLE [GK], 24. Luke ADAMS.
Coach: Neil EMBLEN [ENG]
Auckland City FC: Steve Vuksich +649 21 137 6106 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Waitakere United: Rex Dawkins +6421 974 469 or email@example.com
For further information visit www.oceaniafootball.com