QANTAS Futsalroos have defeated New Zealand's Futsal Whites 3-0 in their opening match of the ASB Trans Tasman Cup in the first ever futsal international to be played in New Zealand on Friday night.
First half goals to Jared Basger and Laureano Gomez gave Australia a 2-0 half time lead before a toe poke from close range by Fernando de Moraes closed out the match at ASB Stadium as the Futsal Whites were continually thwarted by Qantas Futsalroos goalkeeper Peter Spathis.
On the eve of the Qantas Futsalroos departure, Shervin Adeli was drafted into the squad to replace Chris Zeballos who was ruled out through injury.
Both sides failed to create any clear cut opportunities in the opening exchanges until 17-year-old New Zealand debutant Elliot Collier hit the Qantas Futsalroos upright after tidy lead up work from Marvin Eakins and Dylan Manickum.
Moments before the opening goal, Qantas Futsalroos captain Toby Seeto struck New Zealand’s post with a rasping drive. From the ensuing restart Futsal Whites starting goalkeeper David Plowright could only parry a deflected Roberto Maiorana shot into the path of the Jared Basger for an easy tap in.
James Vaughan had the Futsal Whites best opportunity in the first half after solid work by Daniel Burns but his sliding effort was blocked in double-teamed defensive effort by Dean Lockheart and Lachlan Wright.
A second goal seemed inevitable for the Qantas Futsalroos after a series of saves from Plowright towards the end of the first spell, and the Futsal Whites resolve was broken seconds before the break, another back post tap-in this time in more cheeky fashion from Laureano Gomez.
In the second half New Zealand looked to attack on the break with chances falling to Manickum and Burns. Qantas Futsalroos goalkeeper Peter Spathis was in fine form, quick off his line and saving at point blank range from Eakins.
At the other end Clayton Chappell put in a solid second half display and engaged in a personal duel with Aaron Cimitle. Three times the Qantas Futsalroos were denied, twice at full stretch in spectacular fashion.
Chappell’s heroics kept the Futsal Whites in the match, but De Moraes made sure of the result slamming a toe poke from close range after Burns was dispossessed by Wright near the touchline with eight minutes remaining.
Happy with the victory Qantas Futsalroos Head coach Steven Knight credited his goalkeeper, Peter Spathis, with a solid performance and was looking forward to some well earned rest ahead of the next match in the series.
"I think both teams played really well. I'm happy with how we performed and I'm happy we had strong opposition to play against.
"He (Peter Spathis) was the backbone of our qualification for the World Cup, when you're playing quality teams ranked 4, 5 or 6 in the world from Asia you need a good goalkeeper and Peter is one of those."
“It’ll be a big sleep day for us tomorrow, and hopefully we can put in another good performance,” said Knight.
The second match of the ASB Trans Tasman Cup kicks off at 7:30pm Saturday (5:30pm AEST).
ASB Trans Tasman Cup
ASB Stadium, Kohimarama, Auckland
Match 1 – September 21
New Zealand 0
Australia 3 (Basger 14’; Gomez 19’; De Moraes 32’)
New Zealand: 1-Clayton CHAPPELL (gk); 2-James VAUGHAN; 3-Dylan MANICKUM; 4-Jan FISCHER; 5-Miro MAJOR; 7-Marvin EAKINS (c); 8-Daniel BURNS; 9-Jakub SINKORA; 10-Lucas SILVA; 11-Micky MALIVUK; 12-David PLOWRIGHT (gk); 13-Elliot COLLIER; 14-Tai BARHAM; 16-Bakr AL-SAUDI
Qantas Futsalroos: 1-Peter SPATHIS (gk); 2-Daniel FULTON; 3-Jarrod BASGER; 4-Dean LOCKHART; 5-Keenan DUIMPIES; 6-Laureano GOMEZ; 7-Tobias SEETO; 8-Fernando DE MORAES; 9-Daniel FOGARTY; 10-Lachlan WRIGHT; 11-Nathan NISKI; 12-Roberto MAIORANA; 14-Renagi David INGRAM (gk); 15-Aaron CIMITLE