Australia host New Zealand at Suncorp Stadium on Thursday in a friendly between the two nations.
The Socceroos have endured a turbulent group stage in their World Cup qualifiers, winning just one of their last seven games after winning the first three. However, they recovered well in the playoffs, beating the United Arab Emirates 2-1 in the semi-finals and beating Peru on penalties in the final.
Australia are set to make their sixth World Cup appearance at this year’s showpiece event and will continue their preparations for the tournament on Thursday.
In stark contrast, New Zealand cruised through their group, picking up maximum points before securing comfortable victories over Tahiti and Solomon Islands in the round of 16. They were, however, beaten 1-0 by Costa Rica in the playoffs, failing to find their way back into the game after falling behind in the opening three minutes.
The visitors have nothing to play for this week but will be looking to shake off their World Cup qualifying disappointment here.
Australia v New Zealand head-to-head
Historically, there have been 62 meetings between Australia and New Zealand. The home side hold the best record with 38 wins while the visitors have only won 13 times. Their other 11 matches ended in draws.
The two nations last met in a friendly clash in 2011, with the home side losing 3-0.
Australia form guide (all competitions): WWWLL
New Zealand Form Guide (All Competitions): LDLWW
Australia vs New Zealand Team News
Socceroos manager Graham Arnold has named a sizeable squad ahead of the friendlies, with 31 players making the squad. Stoke City’s Harry Souttar and Melbourne City’s Andrew Nabbout are both injured and will not feature this week.
injured: Andrew Nabbout, Harry Souttar
Head coach Danny Hay named a virtually unchanged squad for international friendlies, with 20-year-old goaltender Alex Paulsen and San Diego Loyal defenseman Kyle Adams the only uncapped players on the team.
Australia vs New Zealand XI planned
Australia Predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Mathew Ryan; Nathaniel Atkinson, Trent Sainsbury, Milos Degenek, Joel King; Aaron Mooy, Jackson Irvine; Awer Mabil, Ajdin Hrustic, Martin Boyle; Jamie MacLaren
New Zealand Predicted XI (3-1-4-2): Alex Sail; Billy Tuiloma, Winston Reid, Nando Pijnaker; Joe Bell; Tim Payne, Marko Stamenic, Matthew Garbett, Liberato Cacace; Alex Greive, Chris Wood
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Prediction Australia vs New Zealand
Australia are on a three-game winning streak having won just one in their previous seven games. They are undefeated in their last four games in this game and will be looking forward to this one.
New Zealand, meanwhile, are winless and goalless in their last three matches, two of which have ended in defeat. Their poor record against the Australians could continue this week.
Prediction: Australia 1-0 New Zealand