Smeltz gives New Zealand 1-0 lead after 15 minutes in Group F match at Mbombela stadiumBy AP
Sunday, June 20, 2010
New Zealand takes 1-0 lead after 15 minutes
NELSPRUIT, South Africa — Shane Smeltz has given New Zealand a stunning 1-0 lead against defending champion Italy in their Group F match at Nelspruit’s Mbombela stadium.
Smeltz tapped home in the seventh minute after Simon Elliott’s free kick to the back post deflected off Fabio Cannavaro’s hip as the defender fell.
Italy tried to come back with Riccardo Montolivo’s free kick in the ninth minute, but New Zealand goalkeeper Mark Paston batted away the ball. Simone Pepe then cut into the box from the right touchline, but his shot was deflected for a corner kick.
New Zealand’s combative approach was evident early when Rory Fallon’s elbow caught Gianluca Zambrotta as the two contested a high ball.
Tags: 2010 Fifa World Cup, Africa, Australia And Oceania, Europe, Events, International Soccer, Italy, Nelspruit, New Zealand, South Africa, Southern Africa, Western Europe