Hudson: Belief New Zealand can upset Peru “based on facts”

World Cup qualifying
Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images
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New Zealand manager and possible new Colorado Rapids head coach Anthony Hudson has his eye on an upset.

The Oceania nation is an underdog against CONMEBOL fifth place team Peru in this week’s inter-confederation playoff match-up.

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The bettors have New Zealand 4:1 underdogs at home in Saturday’s first leg and the numbers will be much worse come Wednesday in Lima.

And while an upset may crush the plans of the Rapids, Hudson’s not exactly worried about what the world expects from his All-Whites.

In fact, the side’s experience against the USMNT — when Julian Green and Chris Wood traded goals — and Mexico may give it a boost.

This time last year we went away to USA [drew 1-1] and Mexico [lost 2-1], and we perhaps surprised ourselves, and that was a turning point for us. We have had a handful of games against top teams, and we have to focus on those [strong performances].

Belief is not a vague thing that we just talk about, but it is based on facts. Away from home we have taken teams right to the edge and been competitive. We know we have it within this squad to cause an upset, and know we have to turn that into belief.

The Kiwis lost all three of their Confederations Cup matches, but were hard done-by against Mexico and stuck with Russia in Russia.

Something tells us New Zealand may have something in store for Peru, at least at home in the first leg.