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World Cup spot looks a forlorn hope for Kiwis

NEW Zealand will need a miracle in Wellington next Wednesday to make it to the World Cup after going down 5-1 to Mexico in the first leg in Mexico City yesterday morning.

Playing in front of 105,000 fans at Azteca Stadium, Mexico dominated from the start but was unable to pierce the New Zealand defence, which was led by Ivan Vicelich, Andrew Durante, Tommy Smith and keeper Glen Moss.

The wall was breached in the 30th minute when Paul Aguilar (pictured) lashed home from close range after an ineffectual clearance by Moss.

The second goal came just 10 minutes later when Raul Jimenez nodded in from close range after the defence failed to clear the first ball.

Oribe Peralta added a third for the home side just seconds after half-time, and with more than 15 minutes to go, the crowd was singing "Vamos a El Mundial" (we are going to the World Cup), before Peralta's second and another by captain Rafa Marquez.

Chris James got a late consolation for the visitors.