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HomeNationalSocceroos win 1-0 against Mabel Strike New Zealand - SportsTAZAA News

Socceroos win 1-0 against Mabel Strike New Zealand – SportsTAZAA News

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Brisbane: Cadiz winger Aver Mabil scored in the first half as Australia beat New Zealand 1-0 in a World Cup warm-up match in Brisbane on Thursday.

The match was the first leg of a two-game series celebrating 100 years since Australia played their first international match in 1922, losing 3-1 to New Zealand.

The second match will be played in Auckland on Sunday.

This is the final match on Australian soil before the Socceroos travel to Qatar for the World Cup, where they open their campaign against France on November 22.

Australia took some worries to Qatar as they struggled to keep out a far below-placed side who failed to qualify for the World Cup.

“I’m pretty satisfied to be honest,” Australian midfielder Jackson Irwin said.

“There are a lot of things we can do better. We managed to win, but there were many aspects of the game that we could have done better.

“But at the end of the day, a win is a win and it’s a milestone day for the national team.”

The All Whites shadowed the Australians in both possession and passes completed and had more shots on target than the Socceroos.

Their lack of cutting edge up front proved the difference – while Australia had 12 shots on goal, only three of them were on target. One of them was Mabil’s strike in the 35th minute.

New Zealand frustrated the Socceroos with their high-pressing game and should have gone ahead early when Andre de Jong shot wide after playing one-on-one with goalkeeper Matthew Ryan.

The visitors dominated early on, with many chances, but Australia weathered the storm and began to claw their way back into the game.

Irwin had a golden chance to put the Socceroos ahead after 17 minutes but shot wide as the Australians were frustrated by a tenacious New Zealand side.

But on 35 minutes the All Whites were made to pay for their early misses when Mabil got the ball in space, cut infield and fired a powerful shot past New Zealand keeper Oli Sail from outside the box.

The All Whites were perhaps best impressed by Eliza Just and Liberato Kakes in the second half, but the Socceroos held on for the win.

New Zealand captain Chris Wood said his team missed a golden opportunity to beat their trans-Tasman rivals.

“I was very disappointed – it was one of those games where we could have done a lot better,” said a downcast Wood.

“We have to work on it and be ready for Sunday.”

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