Uzbekistan humble Junior All Whites 3-0

MATT RICHENS
Last updated 07:47 24/06/2013

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The Junior All Whites have made a poor start to the Fifa Under-20 World Cup in Turkey, losing 3-0 to Uzbekistan this morning.

A shocking error by Kiwi keeper Max Crocombe put his side behind on 14 minutes when a routine clearance went straight to opposition forward Igor Sergeev whose shot was well saved, but Abbosbek Makhstaliev followed up and scored into an empty net. 

Uzbekistan were by far the dominant side and ended up with 60 per cent possession and a whopping 21 shots on goal to New Zealand's five.

Sergeev hit the post soon after Makhstaliev's score and the Kiwis were lucky not be further behind at the break as Crocombe made a number of handy saves.

Makhstaliev and Sergeev paired up again to put Uzbekistan 2-0 up the 53rd minute, the former clipping a great ball past the defence for Sergeev to run onto and drill home at the near post. 

Uzbekistan went further ahead 14 minutes later when Diyorjon Turapov's shot took a deflection off Tim Payne and looped into Crocombe's net.

As Neither side had won a game at the under-20 World Cup before this morning, this had been a game coach Chris Milicic had targeted. With Croatia and Uruguay also in New Zealand's group, chances of qualification already look slim.

Their next match is against Uruguay on Thursday morning (NZ time).

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- Fairfax Media

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