The Socceroos and El Ticos finally made it to the world cup 2022 after beating their oppositions in the intercontinental playoffs this week.
Australia eventually came out as a winner in the intercontinental playoff against Peru on Monday. Both sides had to go through a penalty shootout as they shared spoils in a goalless draw. Neither team was more dominant than the other. However, Graham Arnold's men did have more shots on goal and target, one of which was only a few inch away from breaking the deadlock. Meanwhile, Gianluca Lapadula and Co were better at the attacking build up but once again they lacked of clinical finish. Their best opportunity came from Christian Cueva's strike but only went side netting.
Surprisingly, on the verge of the shootout, the skipper Matty Ryan was replaced by the unknown Andrew Redmayne. It turned out that the second goalie rose as the hero on penalties. His bizzare dance between the sticks succeeded in distracting Peruvian executors' focus. Two of them did miss it, one hit the post and the other was denied by Sydney FC goalkeeper. Ricardo Gareca's side wasted their chance to fly to Qatar despite Pedro Gallese's successful attempt in blocking Australia's first penalty. The Socceroos won 5-4 in the end.
Australia vs Peru 0-0 (5-4) p
Australia: Matthew Ryan (Andre Redmayne 120) – Nathan Atkinson (Fran Karacic 91), Aziz Behich (Craig Goodwin 120), Bailey Wright, K Rowles – Aaron Mooy, Ajdin Hrustic, Martin Boyle, Jackson Irvine – Matthew Leckie (Jamie MacLaren 86), Mitchell Duke (Awer Mabil 61)
Peru: Pedro Gallese – A Callens, Carlos Zambrano, M Trauco, L Advincula – Andre Carillo (E Flores 65), Christian Cueva (Alex Valera 116), S Pena, Renato Tapia – Gianluca Lapadula
In the meantime, CONCACAF representative, Costa Rica managed to seal the final berth in Qatar after thumping New Zealand 1-0 last night. Unlike Australia, El Ticos did not have to go through extra time or a shootout. They already opened the scoring through Joel Campbell's tap into the far post taking advantage of the early attack at the first half. All Whites were striving to put them back on the level terms. Unfortunately, Chris Wood and Co were unable to find a breakthrough. PSG man Keylor Navas, made several crucial saves to keep them clean sheet till the final whistle. Costa Rica at last made it to world cup final round in three consecutive editions.
Costa Rica vs New Zealand 1-0
Goals: Joel Campbell (3)
Costa Rica: Keylor Navas – Oscar Duarte, Bryan Oviedo, Keyser Fuller ( C. Martinez 46), F Calvo – Gerson Torres (Kendall Watson 46), Celso Borges (Daniel Chacon 79), J Bennette (Bryan Ruiz 46) – Yeltsin Tejeda, A Contreras, Joel Campbell ( J Venegas 90)
New Zealand: O Sail – Pijnaker, Tuiloma, Winston Reid (Elijah Just 72), Clayton Lewis (Marko Stamenic 79) – Joe Bell, Cacace, Matthew Garbett (Ben Waine 60), N Kirwan (Tim Payne 79), Alex Greive (Kostas Barbarouses 60) – Chris Wood