The New Zealand national football team, known as the All Whites, suffered a 4-1 defeat against Sweden in an international friendly match held in Stockholm. Despite a promising start, the All Whites faltered during a lackluster period towards the end of the first half, allowing Sweden to take control of the game.
New Zealand took the lead early in the match, with Callum McCowatt scoring a well-executed goal in the eighth minute. McCowatt, who plays for a Danish club, was set up by Matthew Garbett, showcasing the team’s potential to cause an upset against the 22nd-ranked side in the world. However, as the first half progressed, Sweden regained momentum and capitalized on New Zealand’s defensive lapses.
In a span of five minutes before halftime, Sweden launched quality counter-attacks that caught the All Whites’ defense off guard. Jesper Karlsson scored the equalizer and quickly added a second goal, while Robin Quaison also found the back of the net, giving the home side the lead.
During the second half, New Zealand regained their composure and created opportunities, with McCowatt and substitute Max Mata coming close to scoring. However, it was Sweden who sealed their victory with a fourth goal in stoppage time, scored by Manchester United winger Anthony Elanga.
The All Whites will now turn their focus to their next game on their European tour, as they face Qatar in Vienna on Tuesday morning.