Tuesday, December 22, 2009
It has been revealed that New Zealand's first warm up game for the 2010 World Cup will be against Mexico, in Los Angeles (an ersatz home match for El Tri) on March 3.
This is a quality warm up game since Mexico's flamboyant attacking style will closely mimic Paraguay; the All White's final opponents in pool play. The passionate Mexican fans will also give our lads a taste of the unholy din to be expected at a World Cup Finals match.
The game falls within FIFA's friendly international window, which means clubs are only obliged to release players for 48 hours. So the fact that it is being played a mere 11 hour's flight from London, rather than in New Zealand, means we have every chance of seeing Captain Courageous Ryan Nelsen, and the other European and US based players, turn out in the Pasadena Rose Bowl.
One can only assume that Mexico sees the All Whites as being on a par with their pool mates South Africa- we certainly can't be expected to offer them a taste of the guile, nor gall, of France.
Whatever way you look at it this is a coup, and is an early Christmas present for NZ Football Fans. Now we just need to secure friendlies against some European sides to replicate the style of Slovakia and Italy and the set is complete.