It takes a lot to silence a roomful of journalists - especially boisterous South American types - but All Whites coach Anthony Hudson just about managed it on Wednesday.

While Peru didn't hold the traditional pre-match press conference at the match venue, perhaps symptomatic of the pressure and expectation they are under here, Hudson and captain Winston Reid faced a press core of almost 100 journalists after the team's training at Estadio Nacional.

While Hudson fended off questions about the team's strategy and tactics, as well as their possible line up, he was unequivocal about what might be possible from his team.

"We haven't come here to pass the time, or for a trip," said Hudson. "We have come here to win."

Advertisement

His confident - and direct - words produced hushed tones in the room, as the journalists began to comprehend what it might mean if things go south.

Hudson's ability to speak Spanish to a decent level has impressed the locals, and it means he can answer questions direct and unfiltered to a local audience, rather than sanitised by an interpreter.

If it was a tactic, it was a clever one.

Hudson's words were broadcast all across Peru on Tuesday night (local time), on the multitude of news and sport channels that are discussing the match.

It seemed to add to the tension felt by the locals, who realise that their team should be superior, especially with home advantage, but also face the nagging reality that New Zealand are still in the tie.

"We expected to win two or three nil in Wellington," explained one local reporter.

"This game in Lima was supposed to be a carnival. But it hasn't happened like that."

Captain Winston Reid also gave the impression of a man on a mission.

He was respectful of Peru, but the West Ham defender shrugged off the qualities of their striker Jefferson Farfan.

"I don't want to sound arrogant, but I think [we] are used to playing against good strikers so it's not a shock for us," said Reid.

"We do our job, he's a good player, but [last] Saturday we had a good game plan against him and if he plays up front I'm sure we will try to do the same."

Reid also laid down the gauntlet, with a cheeky jibe at a local reporter.

The journalist seemed to try and provoke Reid, as he discussed the All Whites' poor recent record in big matches outside New Zealand.

"We know statistics are made to be broken but your team has a bad record away from home. How will you overcome that?

Reid took gentle umbrage at the question and reminded the room of Peru's long World Cup drought.

"Well, you haven't been to a World Cup either for 30 years have you?" said Reid, continuing to stray from the usual diplomacy in such conferences.

"Records are there to be broken for you and for us so we'll see. We know it's difficult like Anthony said, you have a very good team but we must come here and believe in ourselves and through that we will try to get a good result."

Tommy Smith didn't train again on Wednesday and looks unlikely to start, with Andrew Durante the probable replacement, though Themi Tzimopoulos could also be used in that position.

The state of Chris Wood's hamstring is also occupying plenty of column inches in Peru, but it's still unknown if the Burnley striker will start the match.