27 years ago, today

Footballs greatest day


January 10 1982

World Cup Qualifying Asia/Oceania final play off

China 1 (Xiaudong 70mins)

New Zealand 2 (Wooddin 24 mins, Rufer 47 mins)

With New Zealand and China equal on points and sharing the same goal difference, the two sides met in a playoff in neutral Singapore on 10 January 1982. The prize was the 24th, and last, spot in that year’s World Cup finals in Spain. Despite the sapping humidity and an overwhelmingly pro-Chinese crowd of 60,000, the All Whites went 2–0 up with spectacular goals from Wooddin and Rufer. China pulled one back but the New Zealanders held on for a famous victory.

New Zealand

Richard Wilson

Glen Dods

Bobby Almond

Ricky Herbert

Adrian Elrick

Steve Sumner (c)

Grant Turner

Duncan Cole

Allan Boath

Steve Wooddin

Wynton Rufer

Subs: Peter Simonsen (for Boath); Glen Adam (for Rufer)


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