New Zealand 1
After emerging with some credit in losing by one goal to Japan - a team ranked 20 places higher than his Football Ferns - coach John Herdman has wasted no time in looking ahead to Saturday's must-win clash with England at Fifa's Women's World Cup in Germany.
With the English drawing 1-1 with Mexico in yesterday's late game, group B remains wide open.
"The team is still feeling very confident," said Herdman after watching his charges get back to 1-1 after they had conceded an early goal against world No 4 Japan in Bochum.
"We have already had a 0-0 draw with England and feel their style of play suits us better.
"The Japanese were real quality and to get done by a world-class goal in the 60th minute is nothing to be ashamed of. Our strength is in what we showed in coming back from an early goal against a team like them."
After giving up that early goal, when the Japanese caught New Zealand square at the back after Betsy Hassett had given away possession in midfield and Yuki Nagasato had latched on to a lofted through ball from Shinobu Ohno before deftly lobbing the ball over advancing goalkeeper Jenny Bindon, the Ferns rallied.
In less than six minutes, they drew level when left fullback Anna Green fired long to Ria Percival deep on the right. Her inch-perfect cross was met at the far post by Amber Hearn who powered a stunning header into Japan's goal.
An equally sumptuous freekick from just outside the New Zealand penalty area by dead-ball expert Aya Miyama on the hour powered the Japanese back into the lead. Despite their best endeavours, the Ferns could not get back on terms and emulate their Olympic effort in Beijing where the two teams drew 2-2.
Hannah Wilkinson added some height and pace to the New Zealand effort in the last 30 minutes but clear scoring chances continued to elude the Rebecca Smith-led team.
"The players are desperate to get out of the group," said Herdman. "That was the toughest game we have ever faced at a World Cup. A point would have been great against technically the best team in the competition.
"It is exciting to see New Zealand teams constantly raising the bar," said Herdman in reference to the team at the men's Under-17 World Cup in Mexico where they have won through to the last 16.