LISTEN: Pundit Jacob Spoonley tips changed All Whites line-up for Qatar

Sky Sport pundit Jacob Spoonley says he expects coach Darren Bazeley to rotate his squad and maybe opt for a different formation when the All Whites play Qatar on Tuesday.

The former All Whites goalkeeper says he sensed frustration in Bazeley when New Zealand conceded three goals in a five-minute spell against Sweden, during the international friendly won 4-1 by the Swedes.

He thinks Bazeley will look to make some changes to the line-up for the Qatar game, and possibly play with a different formation.

Spoonley, who was co-commentator for Sky Sport’s broadcast of the match, told NewstalkZB‘s Jason Pine:

“They (New Zealand) were beaten comprehensively, and there was a ruthlessness about Sweden.

“However, when you break it down, the All Whites lost the game in two five-minute periods, one before half-time and then the conclusion was nailed right at the end through the Elanga goal.

‘They’re going about their football in the right way’

“In between times, though, the process was good, the approach was confident but the All Whites did learn a lesson … and that lesson was learned particularly by their young midfielders.

“At times, they were too loose; there was a naivety to their play. However, they’re going about their football in the right way and the way in which we expect them to keep learning, and before the 2026 World Cup.”

Spoonley said there was a common thread with the three goals conceded by New Zealand just before half-time.

He said the young midfield trio of Marko Stamenic, Joe Bell and Matt Garbett were a bit “loose” bringing the ball forward and Sweden were able to put them under pressure and force a turnover of possession in the New Zealand half, with All Whites already committed further up the pitch.

“The Swedish then were able to exploit the transition that the All Whites were in, and they went direct to goal.

“They were really good at turning the ball into a counterattack and into a chance which was clinically finished three times in a row.”

Jacob Spoonley’s interview

Listen to the full 11-minute interview with Jason Pine here:

READ MORE: Sweden punish All Whites for seven-minute lapse with 4-1 win >>>>

READ MORE: Players ‘disappointed’ but will learn from Sweden loss, coach Darren Bazeley says >>>>

Match highlights


Game played on Saturday June 17, 2023
Friends Arena, Stockholm
Attendance: 20,528

Sweden 4 (Jesper Karlsson 39′, 45′, Robin Quaison 44′, Anthony Elanga 90+2′)
New Zealand 1 (Callum McCowatt 7′)


Game to be played on Tuesday June 20, 2023

Qatar v All Whites
Sonnensee Stadium, Ritzing, 4am (NZT)

READ MORE: Qatar switch venue for All Whites match to 5,000-capacity stadium >>>>

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