The New Zealand under-20 team could only manage a draw against Solomon Islands in their final pool game.
However, the team is already qualified for the next round of matches, and the result will not have any impact on their ranking.
New Zealand started the game well and showed plenty of determination on the pitch. Many people believed that the players would not be motivated for the game, but they were proved wrong as the team took control of the game as from the kick-off. They created plenty of goal-scoring opportunities but could not manage to find a way to beat the keeper.
The New Zealand coach said that he was pleased with the way his players played. He stated that they got 3 good occasions to score goals early in the game, but the keeper denied them. The coach said that the Solomon Islands goalkeeper deserves credit for the way he played on the day, and he stated that the whole team showed determination. He stated that it was a great achievement for Solomon Islands to have managed to get a draw in the game and that he is happy for them. He knew that it was going to be a tough game against Solomon Islands and that they were good defensively. He believes that the results suit both team as it also allows Solomon Islands to reach the semi-finals.
The New Zealand coach said that he was happy with the performance of his team and that he purposedly made changes to the team. Given that they were already qualified for the semi-finals, he wanted to give playing time to the other players and also allow the first-team players some rest. He believes that his players are ready for the semi-finals and that they will be preparing their next game carefully.