Peruvian football fans have seemingly taken their efforts to disrupt the All Whites' build-up to Thursday's crucial World Cup qualifying playoff match in Lima to new heights.


After several low key (yet highly suspicious) attempts at making life harder for Anthony Hudson's visiting team - including a delayed flight from Wellington, and inexplicably long bus trips to the JW Marriot hotel in Miraflores and the Estadio Nacional - a series of "prolonged fireworks" woke up players in the early hours of Wednesday morning (local time).

NZME football commentator Jason Pine tweeted at 2.51am local time (8.51pm NZT): "Massive explosion of fireworks in the sky directly above the All Whites' team hotel."


According to Pine, the fireworks display resembled Guy Fawkes time.

"It was prolonged, like a display at Guy Fawkes time and loud enough to wake me up and I'm 300 metres away from them [the team hotel].

"It lasted for at least two to three minutes," Pine said.

The team's arrival into Lima was earlier delayed by almost three hours, after what looks like a curious intervention by local authorities.

Then the bus that took the team from Jorge Chavez airport to the hotel was also strangely slow, taking more than twice as long as it normally should have at that time of night.

In what some observers would consider another attempt at ramping up the psychological warfare, the All Whites' double-decker bus got stuck trying to make its way into the stadium for the team's final pre-match training session.

The Peruvian government on Wednesday confirmed, via an official notice, that there will be a public holiday the day after the match if - and only if - the Peru team wins.

La Blanquirroja have not qualified for the World Cup finals - to be held in Russia next year - in more than three decades.