Mumbai: Substitute Anibal Vega struck twice in three minutes to give Paraguay their second win and a round of 16 berth from Group B. Paraguay, trailing 1-2 until the 75th minute after two own goals from skipper Alexis Duarte, finally came through 4-2 against New Zealand at D.Y.Patil Stadium here on Monday.
Alan Rodriguez gave Paraguay a flying start with a left footed freekick from the right that sailed over Kiwi goalkeeper Jacob Clark into the far corner.
Despite missing regular skipper Max Mata due to a booking, New Zealand kept creating chances but Paraguayan goalkeeper Diego Huesca wasn’t tested until the 20th minute. A free-kick from Leon Van Den Hoven aimed at Spragg instead found Duarte in the way and into the goal.
Duarte gifted New Zealand another self goal after Elijah Just cut in a dangerous ball from the left and his bid to clear sent the ball into the goal again in the 34th minute.
Trailing 1-2 at the break, Paraguay tried their best to come back but the Kiwis were tight in defence until Sanchez cracked it in the 74th minute. He was also involved in two assists for Vega who tapped in the 75th and 78th minute. Armoa scored a scorcher coming in from right wing to blast in the net to finish off in style.
Mali hammer Turkey
Earlier, Mali bounced back from a 2-3 loss against Paraguay to outwit Turkey 3-0 in their second Group B clash. Djemoussa Traore scored first after a series of misses by Lassana Ndiaye who found the net on his sixth attempt to put Mali 2-0 up. Fode Konate then rounded things off with a scorcher.
Turkey made four changes after their 1-1 draw against New Zealand while Mali had just one. The physically powerful Mali side had a better hold over the game quickly with breezy attacks especially from the left flank with Djemoussa’s speed troubling the Turkey defence repeatedly. They were strong from the right and centre as well giving the European side no respite.
The African champions’ striker Ndiaye who scored against Paraguay was off colour in the first half. He failed to convert four times placing it wide twice and twice hit straight to Turkey goalkeeper Berke Ozer....