SERENGETI ESTATE - New Zealand goalkeeper Mark Paston will keep his place in the starting line-up for the All Whites' final Group F match on Thursday against Paraguay, despite the return from suspension of Glen Moss.
The keeper has had an excellent World Cup in South Africa so far, helping one of the lowest ranked teams in the tournament become a surprise contender to emerge from the group stage.
The 33-year-old has only been beaten once from open play, against Slovakia. Italy scored from a debatable penalty in a 1-1 draw on Sunday.
Former number one Moss was suspended coming into the World Cup but is now available to play in a match that could see New Zealand, better known for its formidable All Blacks rugby side, further astound pundits and fans and make it through to the last 16 of football's biggest tournament.
"There is a shade of the future in this team and Glen is going to play a big part of it but Mark will start against Paraguay, it's simple," coach Ricki Herbert said on Monday.
"It's the reality of where the team sits at the moment. The position we're in and the performances of the player (Paston)."
They sit on two points in Group F, level with Italy and one ahead of Slovakia. Paraguay lead with four points, but a win for the All Whites on Thursday would see them jump to five, qualifying for the next round.
Another draw could also be enough, depending on the result of the Italy-Slovakia match.
Herbert also said vice captain and midfielder Tim Brown would probably sit on the bench again, despite having recovered from a broken shoulder.comments