New Zealand are preparing to embark on one of the toughest tests in football, as they head to Mexico for their World Cup play-off first leg.
The All Whites topped their World Cup qualification group in Oceania with six wins from as many games, to earn the two-leg date with the fourth-placed nation in CONCACAF qualifying.
However, their upcoming battle on Wednesday stands in stark contrast to their most recent qualifying clash - a 2-0 win over the Solomon Islands in front of 5,600 people in Honiara.
The Estadio Azteca in Mexico City has a capacity of 105,000, is perched 7,200 feet above sea level and will be packed full of parochial Mexicans doing their utmost to distract the visiting Kiwis.
All Whites team doctor Mark Fulcher said they were prepared for the quite literal uphill battle they were set to face in Mexico.
"It's harder to breathe (at altitude), the respiratory rate changes, your heart rate goes up... essentially for any level of exercise, you are potentially more fatigued," Fulcher said.
"For athletes, the simple equation is that you will become more fatigued, more quickly and performance will drop off over a period of time."
Midfielder Leo Bertos said the Kiwis had recent experience playing at altitude and would be better for the exposure to it come Wednesday.
"We have some experience of being at altitude in recent years, which will help," the Wellington Phoenix man said.
"We know it is going to be tough but we can't be intimidated. It's a huge challenge for us."
Further disadvantaging Ricki Herbert's side is the fact that Mexico have lost one qualifying match at the venue in their history, a 2-1 defeat to Costa Rica in 2001 - which makes New Zealand's chances of taking a lead to the second leg in Wellington the following Wednesday all the more unlikely.
A draw of any calibre would undoubtedly go down as 'advantage NZ' heading to Westpac Stadium, as they aim to reach consecutive World Cups for the first time.
From the hosts' point of view, they will be hoping to reach the finals for the sixth time in succession, after disappointing their fans by not qualifying automatically from CONCACAF's final group.
They won just two games of 10 in the final stages of qualifying, to finish fourth behind the USA, Costa Rica and Honduras.
Mexico's head coach Miguel Herrera has named a squad of only local-based players for the intercontinental play-off, in the hope he gets some continuity from them across the 180 minutes.
The irony there being Herrera became Mexico's fourth coach in six weeks in October, as they toyed with Luis Fernando Tena and Victor Manuel Vucetich to replace Jose Manuel de la Torre, before settling on the Club America coach.
All Whites captain Winston Reid will miss the clash due to an ankle injury sustained while training for Premier League club West Ham.
Herrera must decide on who will partner Oribe Peralta up front after shunning the likes of Manchester United's Javier Hernandez in his squad as he stuck with Liga MX players only.
Peralta is set to be joined by either Aldo de Nigris or Raul Jimenez.
|19||O. Peralta||48' 80'|
|Coach: M. Herrera|
for L. Montes 59'
for C. Peña 64'
for O. Peralta 81'
|Furious Mancini slams Inter´s ´worst ever´ first half against Lazio|
|Serie A Review: Champions League places locked, Milan play out six-goal thriller|
|La Liga Review: Villarreal secure Champions League return|
|Lazio 2 Inter 0: Champions League race comes to a Klose|
|Koeman delivers Pelle warning|
|Morata wants to stay at Juventus, claims Marotta|
|Pellegrini disappointed with City defending in defeat|
|Iheanacho: City will bounce back from Saints defeat|
|´On fire´ Mane salutes Southampton show|
|Angers 0 Marseille 1: Batshuayi strike secures Ligue 1 status|
|Southampton 4 Manchester City 2: Mane hat-trick blows top-four race open|
|Van Gaal calls for video referees after Drinkwater decision|
|Schmeichel: I don´t care how we win it|
|Montella open to Italy role|
|Brocchi pleased with Milan fightback|
|Van Gaal defends ´human´ Fellaini over Huth elbow clash|
|Ronaldo wants Zidane to stay at Madrid|
|Ranieri to miss decisive Tottenham clash|
|Rooney disappointed after Leicester draw dents top-four hopes|
|Bayern Munich v Atletico Madrid: Hosts seek to vent Bundesliga frustration|
|Leicester captain Morgan hails battling Old Trafford point|
|AC Milan 3-3 Frosinone: Menez penalty denies strugglers|
|Klopp not concerned by Sturridge behaviour|
|Manchester United 1 Leicester City 1: Captain Morgan on target as Foxes edge closer to glory|
|Allofs: We do not have the same weapons as Bayern|
|Guidolin coy on Swansea future|
|Allegri happy with win after title celebrations|
|Umtiti flattered by Tottenham interest|
|Klopp frustrated by lacklustre Liverpool|
|Hannover mourn Feierabend|
|Godin, Carrasco fit for Bayern clash|
|Swansea City 3 Liverpool 1: Ayew double punishes wasteful visitors|
|Dybala claims Messi, Ronaldo would score less in Italy|
|Juventus 2 Carpi 0: Hernanes, Zaza on target as champions march on|
|Ronaldo back in training for Madrid|
|Barcelona confirm Bravo calf injury|
|Aulas brands Ligue 1 ´championship of Qatar´|
|Leicester City at Manchester United: Aiming for Hollywood ending to title push|
|I can start for England at Euro 2016 - Sturridge|
|Dybala never doubted Juventus|
|Aguero celebrates brother´s Independiente debut|
|Sturridge rounds on critics, plays down Klopp rift|
|Adelaide United 3 Western Sydney Wanderers 1: Reds seal maiden A-League title|
|Eriksson: Simeone is an example to follow|
|´Where am I?´ - Lovren reveals travel struggles|
|´If I have to leave Bayern, then I will´ - Benatia|
|Walker ´over the moon´ after Pochettino agrees new deal|
|MLS Review: Villa leads City, Impact held|
|We´d probably be relegated without Defoe – Allardyce|
|Koeman: Leicester will do well in Champions League|
|Ronaldo needs rest or could miss Euros - doctor|
|United shaped me as a player - Schlupp|
|Sanchez, Vidal lead Chile´s Copa squad|
|Arsenal´s patience paid off - Cech|
|I will know Madrid´s plans - Pellegrini|
|Granada 3 Las Palmas 2: Superb comeback boosts hosts´ survival hopes|
|Martinez pleased with impact of new faces|
|Ligue 1 Review: Lyon, Monaco continue fight for second|
|Serie A Review: Fiorentina frustrated, Torino hit five|
|Barca keeper Bravo set for tests on calf strain|
|Barca will not rely on rivals slipping up - Luis Enrique|
|Simeone: I am not a fortune teller|
|Neil defiant in defeat|
|Real Betis 0 Barcelona 2: Rakitic and Suarez edge champions back ahead in title race|
|´Protests more like disappointed love´ - Wenger sorry he cannot keep Arsenal fans happy|
|Bundesliga Review: Monchengladbach and Dortmund delay Bayern´s title party|
|Arsenal should be doing better, concedes match-winner Welbeck|
|Black wants Villa display to build bridges|
|Tuchel: Hummels abuse went too far|
|Flores laments mixed Hornets performance|
|Scottish Premiership Review: Celtic made to wait by Aberdeen|
|Ribery a doubt for Bayern´s crunch Atletico clash|
|Arsenal 1 Norwich City 0: Substitute Welbeck boosts under-fire Wenger|
|Allardyce rues Sunderland nerves after Stoke draw|
|Atletico Madrid 1 Rayo Vallecano 0: Griezmann maintains title momentum|
|Benitez salutes Newcastle ´heroes´ Townsend and Darlow|
|Hughes disappointed by Sunderland penalty call|
|Football League Review: Wigan confirm promotion to Championship|
|Bilic confident of Europe after West Brom win|
|Howe defends players´ efforts after form slump|
|Bale can match Ronaldo´s run - Zidane|
|Watford poor in Villa win, concedes Deeney|
|Hummels slams ´nonsense´ claims over Bayern request|
|Zidane hopeful on Ronaldo, Benzema as Madrid give backing to medics|
|Pardew rues Cabaye penalty miss in defeat to Newcastle|
|West Brom did not get the breaks - Pulis|
|Fan protests of no concern to Martinez|
|Ramos urges Real Madrid to ´fight to the end´|
|Defoe: You haven´t got a choice, I had to score|
|Watford 3 Aston Villa 2: Late Deeney double sinks Villa|
|Stoke City 1 Sunderland 1: Defoe snatches point but Allardyce´s men slip into bottom three|
|Real Sociedad 0 Real Madrid 1: Late Bale winner keeps title challenge alive|
|West Brom 0 West Ham 3: Noble brace boosts European hopes|
|Newcastle United 1 Crystal Palace 0: Townsend, Darlow heroics boost Benitez|
|Everton 2 AFC Bournemouth 1: Baines strike eases pressure on Martinez|
|Leno to stay at Leverkusen after buyout clause expires|
|Bayern Munich 1 Borussia Monchengladbach 1: Hahn puts title celebrations on hold|
|Borussia Dortmund 5 Wolfsburg 1: Fans round on Hummels but title hopes remain|
|Watzke won´t give up on keeping Hummels|
|Pepe tips Zidane to become top coach|
|Allegri and Mancini laud Ranieri´s Leicester heroics|
|Allegri still hopes to keep Morata at Juventus|
|Mancini praises ´top-quality´ Banega|
|´Even Guardiola needed time´ - Brocchi has no regrets over taking AC Milan role|
|Willian desperate for next season to arrive|
|Mancini: Inter season not a disaster|
|Chelsea v Tottenham: Pochettino hopes derby motivation keeps title chase alive|
|Crotone not Italy´s Leicester, says director Ursino|
|Klopp: Flanagan still faces fitness battle|
|Manchester United v Leicester City: Ranieri aiming for Hollywood ending to title push|
|Hummels to Bayern is the logical deal - Hitzfeld|
|Shaw pushing for United comeback this season|
|Sportiello ´proud´ to be linked with Napoli|
|Arsenal must change to end title drought - Cazorla|
|Tete can´t confirm Bayern interest|
|Montero, Valencia set for Copa America Centenario|
|Vardy, Mahrez more important than Leicester´s defence - Martinez|
|Pellegrini blasts ´unbelievable´ Premier League fixtures|
|Standard Liege terminate Valdes´ loan deal|
|Hiddink: Leicester will not disappear|
|Mata: Leicester can wait a week|
|Pizarro, Farfan not included in Peru´s 40-man Copa squad|
|Wenger: My loyalty helped build Emirates|
|Pochettino eyes Ferguson legacy at Tottenham|
|Thompson to leave Melbourne Victory|
|New York Red Bulls 4 FC Dallas 0: Hosts make it two in a row|
|Blanc hails ´motivated and disciplined´ PSG|
|Van Gaal: Easier for Leicester to sign players than United|
|No shocks as Paraguay announce provisional Copa squad|
|Suarez headlines Uruguay´s Copa America squad|
|Sturridge reveals he is ´not Liverpool for life´ and hopes to match Suarez success|
|David Luiz, Silva and Marcelo absent from Brazil´s preliminary Copa America squad|
|Augsburg 0 Cologne 0: Weinzierl´s men edge closer to survival|