FIFA U-17 World Cup Preview: New Zealand vs Turkey, Friday 5 pm

New Zealand take on Turkey in the FIFA U-17 World Cup Group B opening match at the DY Patil Stadium in Mumbai.

2 min read
New Zealand’s Under-17 football team.
  • New Zealand take on Turkey in a FIFA Under-17 World Cup match at the DY Patil Stadium in Mumbai on Friday.

  • The match is scheduled to start at 5 pm.

  • In India, the match will be broadcasted on SONY TEN 2, SONY TEN 2 HD, SONY ESPN, SONY ESPN HD, SONY TEN 3 and SONY TEN 3 HD and DD Sports channel. It can be viewed online on the SonyLiv app.

Unheralded New Zealand will have a tough job at hand when they take on Turkey in the FIFA U-17 World Cup Group B opening match at the DY Patil Stadium in Mumbai on Friday.

New Zealand's weak defence was exposed in the two practice games, which they lost to Brazil and England 1-2 and 2-3, respectively.

This would be an area of concern for their coach Daniel Hay who has been saying that his side needs to play their best if they want to do better than the last edition in Chile, when they lost to Brazil in the Round of 16.

With the likes of Oliver Whyte and skipper Max Mata, the Kiwi team has a strong attack and their midfielders and defenders will have to come to party to ensure that the side gives a tough competition to Turkey.

New Zealand, who are taking part in the tournament for the eighth time, were the first team to arrive in Mumbai and the only one to have to played two practice games. Turkey, who arrived later, did not have that luxury and depended only on the training sessions.

Turkey, who’ll be playing for the first time on Indian soil, have an array of strong players looking to make a mark.

Turkey have qualified for the U-17 World Cup on two previous occasions. In Peru 2005, they reached the semi-final, suffering a narrow 3-4 defeat at the hands of Brazil before losing the third place match 1-2 against the Netherlands.

Four years later in Nigeria, the Turks were unlucky to lose 3-5 on penalties to Colombia in the quarter-finals.

They’re a confident side having made it to India by reaching the semi-finals of the European qualifying tournament, in which they lost to England 0-1.

Turkey would like to have an aggressive approach from the word go and also have more possession of the ball.

But Turkey coach Mehmet Hacioglu had conceded that the three opposition teams in their group, including New Zealand, have players with much better physical strength.

"Realistically, the other three teams (in the Group) have more physical advantages. But we have lot of talented players and we can change this disadvantage into an advantage," the Turkey head coach said.

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