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30 May 2018
Final places in the Euro Winners last 16 filled
Heartbreak and triumph in the last day of the group stages
The remaining spaces in the round of 16 have been filled and more teams make arrangements to go home after failing to qualify for the next round of the Euro Winners Cup.
After the last game finished, the draw for the next round was also held and you can see the results of that by clicking here.
The action of the final day didn't disappoint, with titans clashing and superstars strutting their stuff.
The final match in Group A saw Polish side, KP Lodz, attempt to top their group, and in the process, prevent ACD Sotao from picking up any points by beating them in the day's final fixture.
The local side had a good turnout in terms of spectators and when they finished the first period of time with the lead, it seemed like the encouragement of the crowd would carry them through to claim their first win. But their Polish opposition proved too strong and steadily muscled the Portuguese aside, taking a one goal advantage in the second period, which they then went on to increase to take away all three points.
Both SC Braga and MFC Spartak were already guaranteed places in the next round of the Euro Winners Cup, but they were playing for that all-important top spot. SC Braga went into the game as favourites but the Bulgarians, having won their previous two games and picking up six points out of six, had every reason to feel confident, even against the reigning champions.
Braga were clinical in front of goal from the start, taking an early lead and building on it until they reached a final tally of 11, without conceding a goal. A totally overwhelmed MFC Spartak never really looked like competing for the points but can be happy with a second place and, of course, a place in the last 16.
After the two available places in the next round had already been filled by SC Braga and MFC Spartak, the only thing left to fight for was third position, as well as the last chance to grab some points before going home. The game exploded into action immediately with real end to end stuff, as Jeremy put away a hat-trick and the first period finished at four goals apiece.
It seemed that the Czech side were the first ones to run out of steam as the French carried on scoring at a similar rate, whereas Teplice struggled to keep up. The game ended with three goals separating the teams, after Marseille proved the deadlier in front of goal. They take third place while Teplice will be going home with no points.
Sporting CP started the day behind their Estonian opponents, Nomme BSC Olybet, in the Group C table, as yesterday they dropped a point against Dutch side, BS Egmond, who forced them to extra time. As neither of the teams below them (who would play against each other later) had enough points, the Portuguese and Estonian sides were already through to the next stage of the competition, but they were fighting for the top spot.
After their shaky performance yesterday, Sporting must have been concerned when they found themselves trailing within the opening minutes of the game. But they soon found their feet and went into the first break with a comfortable 4-2 lead. Nomme didn't manage to get on the scoresheet again, but the same can't be said for Sporting, who, by the end of the game, had clocked up nine goals and secured their place in the next round.
BS Egmond gave the Portuguese titans, Sporting, a real scare the day before by forcing them into extra time following a really strong performance. They will have counted themselves unlucky not to have picked up any points so far in the competition but that's just what they intended to do today against a Danish side who were in the same situation.
Copenhagen, however, took the lead and held onto it into the second period, until the game burst into life and suddenly the Dutch had turned things around, leading at the second break by 3-2. This is how the game would end after a goalless third period where Egmond defended their lead well to take three points and avoid finishing the group in fourth position.
With a win over ACS West Deva in today's fixture, Oslo BSC could avoid finishing bottom of the Group D table after they were still to pick up any points in the competition. But ACS West Deva had their own agenda - qualification for the next round. With a win, and a favourable result in the group's other game, they still had a chance of securing their place, and so there was plenty to play for going into this fixture.
The Romanians lead by a single goal going into the second period but they suddenly found another gear and sped past the Norwegian side, helped by a hat-trick from Maci. Oslo managed to pull three goals back, but West Deva were too far ahead by this point. The three points in the bag, all the Romanians could do was wait for the result of the group's final game to see if they had done enough to secure a spot in the last 16…
BSC Vybor, already had a place secured in the next round but their opponents, GR Amigos da Paz, needed the three points as West Deva's victory earlier in the day, knocked them out of second place. A win would put them back on track but a strong Ukrainian team, with no interest in doing their group-mates a favour, stood in their way. In a low-scoring but high-intensity bout, the score was tied at one goal apiece for the majority of the match.
It took the Vybor number three, Cherevko, to complete his brace in the final third of the match to claim the points against a Portuguese side who defended so well throughout the game and will be disappointed not to have taken away any points.
The game between BLC Vamos (Belgium) and Igol BSC (Lithuania) was one of the day's many games that served as a showdown to secure third place and, of course, avoid finishing bottom of the group. With pride at stake, both teams were cautious to attack and leave themselves exposed, meaning that it took a while for either to break the deadlock.
The lead was eventually taken two minutes before the first whistle by Vasiljevs and the Lithuanian team started the second period in control. They then went on to smash four more past the Belgians who may have thought that the three points were still within reach at the end of the first period. A hat-trick from Pernai and a brace from Vasiljevs took the final tally to seven and Igol BSC ended up cruising to victory with Vamos unable to mount a response, ending the group stages in fourth position with no points.
The clash of the Group E titans promised to be an intense and fast-paced coming together of quality, and when Lokomotiv opened the scoring through Fedorov early on, it was up to Alanyabelediye Spor to respond. This, however, was made difficult when Lucao quadrupled the Lokomotiv tally by helping himself to a hat-trick before the first whistle.
The Turkish side reacted with two goals of their own in the second period and then another in the third but it all came a little late, as before they knew it, Lokomotiv upped their game and put away five more before the end of the game. Alanyabelediye had to settle for a second-place finish, with both teams heading through to the last 16.
The opening game on pitch two was essentially a battle for pride and third place. Neither team had won a game going into today's fixture, meaning that they were both bottom of Group F on zero points; but in beach soccer, there can only be one winner, so one of the teams would walk away with at least one point by the end of the match.
AO Kefallinia enjoyed a 2-0 lead before the first break, but CS Djocker dragged themselves quickly back into the tie, reducing the deficit to just one at the end of the second period. In the third, both teams would score again but the Greeks managed to hang on to their narrow lead and end the game on top, finishing the group in third place. Unfortunately for CS Djocker, their competition ends in fourth place with no points.
When another of the day's group title deciders kicked off between CD Melistar Melilla and FC Bate Borisov, it promised to be a close contest and took a while to get off the ground. The first goal only went in at the end of the first third, with Cristian Biermann getting on the scoresheet with two minutes to go.
But BLC Bate squeezed in an equaliser with literally a second to go and the first period ended on level terms. The Belarussians pushed on and used their momentum to score two more in the second period, leading 3-2 by the time the third period started. The final section of the game was a fierce scramble for goals as both teams felt that they were in with a chance. But in the end, FC Bate Borisov maintained their one-goal advantage until the final whistle, to be crowned group champions.
Both Happy Car Sambenedettese BS and Dinamo Batumi went into the day's only Group G fixture with a win each, and each fancied themselves to continue their run against the other. The game kicked off and it was clear that the Italians had the upper hand, putting two past their Georgian opponents before the end of the first period.
They increased their lead to an uncatchable six goals, including braces from Moran and Di Palma. A final push from Dinamo grabbed them two hard-fought consolation goals but it was too little too late and they ran out of time. Happy Car top the group after winning both of their games.
Group H's first game of the day was BSC Kristall against Viareggio BS. Being in a group that consisted of group winners from the Nazaré Cup meant that there was only one space up for grabs in the last 16 of the Euro Winners Cup. This wasn't just a coming together of two beach soccer giants, this was a coming together of two giants with everything to lose - just the way we like it! A single goal from Kristall separated the sides at the first break.
The Russian side managed to double this advantage and Viareggio spent the rest of the game playing catch up. Finally finding the net, only to be knocked back again by two more Kristall goals which wrapped up the tie. The Italians are now unable to pass through to the next round, but Kristall are looking strong and will fancy their chances after topping a really tough Group H.
BSC Artur Music and Catania BS may be a little disappointed to have spent the final day of the group stages battling for third place. But battle is what they had to do and the close contest would decide who would leave the competition with points, and who would go home with none.
Artur Music started the game strongly and were leading the way with a 3-1 advantage at the second whistle. In the third period the Italians put together a comeback campaign and brought themselves back on level terms. This forced the Ukrainians into extra time and beyond, bringing us the first, much anticipated, round of penalties in this year's Euro Winners Cup. In the ultimate test of nerves, the teams converted their first penalties and went to Sudden Death and the Ukrainians blinked first. The one point went to Catania who claim third spot in Group H.
After losing both of their previous games (and the other teams in the group winning both of theirs) Playas de Mazarrón and Boca Gdansk were here today to tussle for third position and end the campaign with a victory. At the first break in play the sides were drawn at a goal each but then Boca kicked into attack mode and got their tally up to five, with the Spanish two goals behind.
The game finished with a nerve-racking final period in which Playas de Mazarrón played well and scored more goals, but the final outcome was Boca enjoying the more generous share of eleven goals and securing third place, while Playas de Mazarrón leave the tournament without winning any points.
In the battle for one of the few remaining places in the final 16 of the competition, the meeting on the sand between Falfala Kfar Qassem and Casa do Benfica de Loures was always going to be a spectacle. After going two goals down within the opening minutes, Falfala fought back to end an intense first period on top, bringing the score under their control at 3-2.
By the third period the score was balanced out at 4-4, thanks to a Carballo hat-trick for Casa Benfica. However, already on two goals, Llorenç had ambitions to grab a hat-trick of his own. This is exactly what he did, pouncing on a loose ball to slot home and clinch passage into the next stage of the competition for Falfala.
For full results, fixtures and standings, click here.