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22 Nov 2013
Dream rematch a reality for Final
Iran defeats combative UAE as Russia defeats Switzerland to reach final, while Italy and Brazil will play for 5th
Iran advances to final with exciting win
The first semi-final match of the day was absurdly exciting as some of the best defense and saves were made early and often as the game went into the final period without a goal. The third period was an explosion of offense as Iran score two goals and went on to win 2-1 over UAE. The entire match had the fans on their toes and in the end it was one the most intense matches of the tournament.
Middle Eastern rivals, Iran and UAE know each other all too well and the opening minutes of the match showed that. There were great defensive stops though the goalkeepers were called upon to make some important saves. The goalies did their jobs to keep things level and going into the final minutes of the frame there had not been any goals scored. As the seconds ticked away both sides looked more urgent to score knowing that the difference between a win or loss could be a single goal. Rockets were struck from both sides, however, the keepers made some dashing saves to prevent that first goal. The period ended just how the game began, tied at 0.
The middle frame began with the most exciting of sequences as UAE was given a free kick from an acute angle and P. Hosseini, the goalkeeper for Iran, made an acrobatic save that he could not get a handle on the ball, and then two rebound shots were struck by UAE but both were stopped by Iran defenders. The second period was also filled with more physical play as hosts and Iranians look more and more desperate to get the elusive first goal. The sides were both determined to not give up what could be the deciding goal. A change in keeper for UAE did not seem to affect Zayed’s Sons as Aljasmi played just as well as Humaid did in the first period. It could be argued that Aljasmi was asked to do a little more, though after a goalless first two periods it did not matter. The second period ended tied at 0.
No changes were made in goal for either team and the tension was palpable with The Persian Stars and UAE still searching for the back of the net. Both teams went into a frenzy only seconds after each other with two goals coming immediately after one another. The first goal came at the midway point on a bit of controversial call, when two balls were on the pitch at the same time, one scored and the referee counted it. Iran took the ensuing kick-off and put the bullet of a shot in the net. Iran added another goal less than a minute later to give them their first lead of the match. That final goal was the deciding one as the period ended with a score of Iran 2-1 UAE.
The 2-1 victory for Iran was as exciting a match you can watch in Beach Soccer without going into penalties, which Iran was more than used to. The Princes of Persia will Russia in the Final on Saturday. The loss was an excruciating one for UAE as they were winning and the hosts almost pulled out a victory.
Goals: 0-1: Adel, min. 6 (3); 1-1: M. Ahmadzadeh, min. 6 (3); 2-1: M. Kiana, min. 5 (5);
Russia thwarts epic comeback to reach final
The two European Beach Soccer giants, Switzerland and Russia. Already knew who their potential opponents would be and they came out ready to play, with the final on the line. These two teams also knew other very well, having played against each other in many top-flight Beach Soccer events. The game was played brilliantly by both teams with a very small number of mistakes and amazing goals. Russia went up early and scored often but Switzerland mounted a heroic comeback that fell just short with Russia defeating Switzerland 11-10.
The Russians and Swiss began the match very conservative but as the period advanced, they both opened their offenses and in the early minutes Switzerland were on the brink of scoring, having sniffed the goal a little more. The men from the Alps may have looked poised to score first but the Russians were the first to get a goal when Peremitin struck a shot that got past the Swiss keeper, Valetin. The first goal created a flood of quick goals for Russia as they scored another two goals in less than two minutes to take a controlling three goal lead halfway through the opening period. The Swiss bomber, Stankovic, a player everyone knew would score eventually, nailed a shot that got past the Russian keeper and brought Switzerland back within two goals. There was just over a minute left when Stankovic struck again for Switzerland, but Peremitin for Russia scored his second goal only minutes before the period ended to put Russia up 4-2 at the break.
It was almost impossible to believe that the match could get any more exciting but the opening minutes of the middle frame were just that, incredible. No goals were scored early but the keepers were saved by the posts on multiple occasions and even created some offensive chances of their own. The score remained the same until Mo scored on a penalty kick to get his squad to within one goal. Almost midway through the frame, Peremitin scored a hat trick to put his side up two, and some seconds later, Russia added another goal on a beautiful pass across goal from Krash that was then netted by Eremeev. Mo scored his second goal of the match late in the period to get his team back within two goals. The comeback was still not complete, but shortly afterwards Stankovic scored on a great header with less than 20 seconds left in the period to get a hat trick that brought his team within one goal. The score was Switzerland 5-6 Russia, at the end of the period.
No lead is safe when playing either team but Switzerland had yet to sniff the lead and was fighting the entire game to make the legendary comeback. The third period began with Russia getting the offensive opportunities but the Russians could not take advantage. Three minutes into the final frame, Peremitin scored his fourth goal of the match for Russia and put his team up 7-5. A direct kick goal by Russia was called off and that allowed Stankovic to take over. Halfway through the period, he scored his fourth and fifth goals one right after the other to tie the game for the first time since the opening minutes. The World Champions were determined to restore their lead and they did with a direct kick goal from Krash to go back up by one goal. Shaykov scored his second for Russia to put his team back up by two goals. Switzerland was still not done and they added another late goal from Borer to get back within one goal. With just over 90 seconds to go, on their second free kick goal in less than a minute, the Swiss hit again, on a hat trick from Mo, to level the score. No other goals were scored as the match headed to extra time.
Just as the match seemed destined to penalties, tied in extra time, Russia scored two quick goals to make sure Switzerland could not come back again. But the Swiss had different plans, as Stankovic netted his sixth of the match to get within one goal with 18 seconds left. It ended up being too late, though, as Russia held on, for good this time.
In the highest scoring Samsung Beach Soccer Intercontinental Cup match ever, Switzerland was forced to play tied or from behind the entire match. The 11-10 win in extra time for Russia sets up a dream rematch between Russia and Iran. Their previous match ended 2-2 and went into overtime, when no goals were scored, and finally ended in penalties, with Iran winning.
Goals: 0-1: Peremitin, min. 7 (1); 0-2: Shaykov, min. 6 (1); 0-3: Shishin, min. 5 (1); 1-3: Stankovic, min. 4 (1); 2-3: Stankovic, min. 1 (1); 2-4: Peremitin, min. 0 (1); 3-4: Mo, min. 8 (2); 3-5: Peremitin, min. 7 (2); 3-6: Eremeev, min. 6 (2); 4-6: Mo, min. 3 (2); 5-6: Stankovic, min, 0 (2); 5-7: Peremitin, min. 9 (3); 6-7: Stankovic, min. 6 (3); 7-7: Stankovic, min. 6 (3); 7-8: Krash, min. 5 (3); 7-9: Shaykov, min. 2 (3); 8-9: Borer, min. 2 (3); 9-9: Mo, min. 1 (3); 9-10: Krash, min. 0 (et); 9-11: Peremitin, min. 0 (et); 10-11: Stankovic, min. 0 (et).
Brazil cruises into 5th Place match
The 5-3 win for Brazil over Morocco began exciting with excellent defending, but after a number of botched chances for both teams, the offenses began to flourish. The 5th play-off game saw a little bit of everything over all three periods. The two teams opened up their attacks and Brazil used big first and second periods to jump to a big lead. Morocco was unable to overcome the strength and teamwork utilized by Brazil though they impressed with some spectacular shots and gameplay of their own, despite some unlucky bounces.
Brazil and UAE both had disappointing and excruciatingly close losses in the opening matches of the matches of the tournament but in the opening minutes of the first period, the two squads showed no signs of a letdown. Brazil used sound defense to force Moroccan turnovers but they did not score off those plays. Morocco had just as many chances as well but Brazil was able to safely stop every shot. Going into the final third of the period, the goalies had done more than was expected of them as they kept the score tied at 0. The gameplay was end to end and the first goal came at Morocco’s expense as Mauricinho was given some open space and made sure he did not miss. The first goal opened the field up for Brazil and they added another goal late in the period, which put his side up by two goals. The period ended with a score of Brazil 2-0 Morocco.
The excitement and pace in the opening minutes of the second period was relentless and Morocco saw more opportunities to score were not able to get the goals they needed. The missed chances for The Lions of the Atlas led to transition goals for the verdeamarela, as they capitalized on their chances and added two more quick goals early in the period. The quick goal brought the Moroccan defense together as they noticeably began shutting down the Brazilian offense and limited the chances on goal. The second period whistle blew and Negão's side found themselves up 4-0.
An amazing strike direct from the kick-off by Brazil jumpstarted the action in the final period, and a wonderful save from Morocco set the stage for a very competitive final frame. Brazil used a new keeper, Wesley, who made his first start and saw his first playing time in the tournament. Wesley had an excellent debut but suffered a knee injury early in the third period. The depth of Brazil was never in question, though, as they brought in Cesinha, their regular keeper for this tournament. Morocco took quick advantage of the Seleçao's change goal, though, scoring two goals in two minutes, the last one coming off a great cross and finished with a magnificent low and diving header from El Hamidy. The two goals gave Morocco newfound life and they were only down by two hits at that point. Brazil added one more very late goal to insure their victory and the final frame ended with the Tetracampeão winning 5-3 but not before Morocco added a direct kick goal with one second left.
Brazil will now face the winner Italy in a match to determine fifth and sixth place finishers on the final day of the tournament, Saturday. They earned that chance with the 5-3 victory over Morocco. It will be an opportunity for the Canarinha to finish the tournament strong with two straight wins. The loss for Morocco leaves them winless in the tournament but they will have the chance to play for seventh place on Saturday, against Mexico.
Goals: 1-0: Mauricinho, min. 2 (1); 2-0: Datinha, min. 1 (1); 3-0: Mauricinho, min. 8 (2); 4-0: Sidney, min. 8 (2); 4-1: Boulakouaba, min. 7 (3); 4-2: El Hamidy, min. 5 (3); 5-2: Catarino, min. 0 (3); 5-3: El Hadaoui, min. 0 (3).
Italy to play for 5th after 1st win
Mexico came into their fourth match having lost two games in which they could have very well won, but they came into the 5th place play-off game looking like title contenders and not losers of 2 of 3 matches. Italy was knocked around a little in the opening round but they came out in this match with a great intensity and scored late in the first period and used the only second period goal to take the lead. The match went back and forth until the end, including two last minute goal, with Italy coming out on top 5-4.
Mexico began the match with two quick shots on goal but they were both stopped by Italy. The Azzurri were on the defensive in the opening minutes as Mexico controlled possession and the tempo. Italy did not see very many open goal looks early in the frame but with the speed being so quick both sides were able to get up and down the pitch, however the goalies were able to twart everything sent their way. The number of attempts kept piling up for Mexico and with four minutes left in the period, those chances turned into a goal after Marin of La Tricolor hustled past the Italian defender and then put the close ranged shot in the back of the net. Palmacci of Italy scored in the last possible second of the first period and the frame ended tied 1-1.
Both sides made changes in goal to begin the second and both came into the game prepared to play. The early minutes of the middle frame was filled with defensive stops and blocked shots, with both sides limiting the others offensive chances. The Italians and specifically Palmacci scored their second goal of the match on a right-footed shot off a brilliant display of quick reflexes from the Italian striker. Despite the opening period being tied, it was dominated by Mexico but the second period was all Italy as their defense looked stronger and their offense was on full display late in the period. For all of the attacking play, The Europeans scored the only goal of the period and the middle frame ended Mexico 1-2 Italy.
Mexico began the final frame as beneficiaries of an own goal from Italy, however the lead only lasted 30 seconds as The Azzurri retook the lead by scoring on a corner kick that was finished with a wonderful diving header. The Azteca were not happy with the deficit and were intent on getting the equalizer, which they did halfway through the period on a great strike by Plata. Going into the final minutes neither team had scored again though both squads were knocking on the door. The Italians scored the go-ahead goal with just over two minutes remaining on a direct kick from 24 meters out. It was the second goal of the match for Leghissa. A late penalty kick was given to Mexico and Marin nailed the kick home with less than a minute to go to tie the match at 4. Only a few seconds later, Palmacci scored his third of the day, with under 20 seconds left, to give his team the final lead, 5-4.
The 5-4 win for Italy was their first of the tournament and came at a perfect time as they will now be able to play for fifth place against the days first match winner, Brazil, on Satuday. It will be a rematch of the group stage match lost by Italy. The loss for Mexico is especially tough to swallow as they could have won this match just as they could have their first two, but they will be playing in a tough match for seventh place against Morocco, losers against Brazil.
Goals: 1-0: Marin, min. 4 (1); 1-1: Palmacci, min. 0 (1); 1-2: Palmacci, min. 6 (2); 2-2: Frainetti(own goal), min. 10 (3); 2-3: Leghissa, min. 10 (3); 3-3: Plata, min. 6 (3); 3-4: Leghissa, min. 2 (3); 4-4: Marin, min. 0 (3); 4-5: Palmacci, min. 0 (3).
SAMSUNG BEACH SOCCER INTERCONTINENTAL CUP DUBAI 2013
16:45 – Brazil 5-3 Morocco (Play-off for 5th Place)
18:00 – Mexico 4-5 Italy (Play-off for 5th Place)
19:15 – Iran 2-1 UAE (Semi-final)
20:30 – Switzerland 10-11 Russia (Semi-final)
Games for tomorrow:
Saturday 23rd of November, 2013
16:45 – Morocco vs. Mexico (7th Place Match)
18:00 – Brazil vs. Italy (5th Place Match)
19:15 – UAE vs. Switzerland (3rd Place Match)
20:30 – Iran vs. Russia (Final)