(GSM) - Paraguay need just a point to assure a berth in the Round of 16 on Thursday, but it won't come easy for them as they face off with New Zealand in the final round of games in Polokwane.
After a draw with Italy and a win over Slovakia, Paraguay sit atop Group F on four points and have their fate in their own hands as they go into the game brimming with confidence.
New Zealand, meanwhile, came into this tournament as rank outsiders in this group with Italy and Slovakia, but they have put together 1-1 draws with both sides to ensure that they have qualification hopes entering this game.
A victory for New Zealand would secure a berth in the Round of 16, and a draw would be enough provided Italy draw with Slovakia and the All Whites have scored more goals.
Paraguay have no injury concerns ahead of the game, and manager Gerardo Martino would be unlikely to make any changes after strong results in their first two games.
New Zealand will also probably field the same side that has defended quite well against both Italy and Slovakia, and they'll go out with a bit more attacking impetus knowing that a historic win would get them through. Tim Brown is still a doubt after missing the Italy game.
Cautions could still be a problem for both sides if they advance as cards aren't forgiven until after the group stage.
Paraguay have Víctor Cáceres and Enrique Vera sitting on a booking while Tony Lochhead, Winston Reid, Ryan Nelsen, Tommy Smith and Rory Fallon are all going to have to be a bit cautious.
|14||P. Da Silva|
|9||R. Santa Cruz||41'|
|Coach: G. Martino|
for O. Cardozo 66'
for N. Valdez 67'
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