World Cup Daily Recap: Italy held by New Zealand, Brazil cruises, Paraguay wins

World Cup Daily Recap: Italy held by New Zealand, Brazil cruises, Paraguay wins

World Cup 2010

World Cup Daily Recap: Italy held by New Zealand, Brazil cruises, Paraguay wins

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photo by ISIphotos.com

By FRANCO PANIZO

New Zealand earned the biggest result in its history by holding the reigning World Cup champions to a shocking 1-1 draw on Sunday.

Determined defending by Ryan Nelsen and the rest of New Zealand's back line helped post the most surprising result of the World Cup, as Italy failed to score from the run of play in its second consecutive Group F match.

Shane Smeltz gave New Zealand a shocking lead against the Italians in the 7th minute when he latched onto a free kick and poked the ball home from inside the six-yard box.

Italy responded through a Vincenzo Iaquinta penalty kick later in the half after Daniele De Rossi embellished a shirt tug from Tommy Smith.

The Azzurri dominated the remainder of the match and unleashed 25 shots in total, but could not find the go-ahead goal, leaving New Zealand with a chance to advance from the group.

Here are the match highlights, as well as from the rest of Sunday's games:

Kaka sent off in Brazil's 3-1 win vs. Ivory Coast

Luis Fabiano scored two goals while Elano added another as Brazil posted a 3-1 victory over Ivory Coast in a chippy encounter.

Brazil advanced to the Round of 16 with the win, but ugly fouls and questionable refereeing decisions marred one of the most anticipated matches of the group stages. One of those calls was when Kaka was ejected with a second late yellow card for a questionable foul on Kader Keita.

Luis Fabiano also had a goal stand despite touching the ball with his hand and arm before slotting it to the near post.

Ivory Coast, which has just one point after two matches, scored its lone goal as Didier Drogba headed a cross past Julio Cesar 11 minutes from the final whistle.

Here are the match highlights:

 

Paraguay beats Slovakia, 2-0

Paraguay continued the South American teams' strong run of performances at the World Cup, defeating Slovakia 2-0 to put it in first place of Group F.

Goals from Enrique Vera and Cristian Riveros paved the way for Paraguay, which can secure advancement to the knockout stages with a draw in its final group match against New Zealand.

Slovakia struggled mightily against the Paraguayan defense, getting just one shot on goal in the match. Attackers Marek Hamsik and Vladimir Weiss failed to impose their wills, and now must help Slovakia to a win against Italy to have a shot at advancing.

Here are the match highlights:

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Still can't believe New Zealand and Italy tied? Do you see Paraguay winning Group F? Will Slovakia reach the Round of 16? Impressed by Brazil? Disappointed by Ivory Coast?

Share your thoughts below.

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