Ninkovic
Euro Beach Soccer League Belgrade 2017
27 Jun 2017

Serbia star Ninkovic hails beach soccer's growth

The former football international was present at the Euro Beach Soccer League stage in Belgrade.


Former Serbia international and current Sydney FC star Milos Ninkovic was one of many interested spectators at this weekend’s Euro Beach Soccer League stage in Belgrade.

The 32-year-old, who helped his A-League side to the championship last season, was on hand to promote the event in his native city and watched on as Serbia finished second in Division B behind winners Estonia.

A year on from hosting the Euro Beach Soccer Cup, where Serbia struggled against elite opposition, a more level playing field allowed Ninkovic’s countrymen to improve and the former Red Star Belgrade striker believes the sport can continue to grow.

"It's really nice, last year I watched this sport for the first time but I think this year we are much better than we were and I'm very happy to be here," he told Beach Soccer Worldwide.

"Everyone here in Serbia likes to play football and basketball but this kind of sport I think it’s different. I know many players who go to play beach soccer after football and this week I will practice and try do that myself.

"I really like to play and watch because it’s very interesting. It’s a hard sport to play but I want to give it a try."

While Ninkovic is regularly back in Serbia to watch beach soccer in the country, he also sees how the sport is growing Down Under in Australia.

"In Australia we have the perfect location and many players there play beach soccer too," he added.

"I watch many times on Sydney beach and they love to play beach soccer there. I want to try organise for some guys from Serbia to go there and play some friendly games or something."

RESULTS & SCHEDULE
September 14, 2017 - September 17, 2017
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Playoffs
Team P W W+ L GF GA GD PTS
Division A - Group 1
Team P W W+ L GF GA GD PTS
Portugal POR 3 3 0 0 18 14 4 9
Spain ESP 3 2 0 1 18 11 7 6
Swizerland SUI 3 1 0 2 17 21 -4 3
Poland POL 3 0 0 3 15 22 -7 0
Division A - Group 2
Team P W W+ L GF GA GD PTS
Russia RUS 3 3 0 0 12 6 6 9
Italy ITA 3 2 0 1 19 13 6 6
Belarus BLR 3 1 0 2 8 10 -2 3
Ukraine UKR 3 0 0 3 7 17 -10 0
Division B - Group 1
Team P W W+ L GF GA GD PTS
Estonia EST 3 3 0 0 11 5 6 9
Greece GRE 3 2 0 1 13 9 4 6
Bulgaria BUL 3 1 0 2 8 9 -1 3
Romania ROM 3 0 0 3 7 16 -9 0
Division B - Group 2
Team P W W+ L GF GA GD PTS
Turkey TUR 3 2 1 0 13 8 5 8
Hungary HUN 3 2 0 1 18 13 5 6
England ENG 3 1 0 2 10 12 -2 3
Moldova MOL 3 0 0 3 7 15 -8 0
Play-off for 7th Place
Romania ROM 3 - 5 MOL Moldova
Poland POL 4 - 4 (1 - 2) (PSO) UKR Ukraine
Play-off for 5th Place
Bulgaria BUL 3 - 5 ENG England
Swizerland SUI 6 - 4 BLR Belarus
Promotion Final
Estonia EST 2 - 4 TUR Turkey
Play-off for 3rd place
Greece GRE 1 - 3 HUN Hungary
Spain ESP 2 - 2 (0 - 2) (PSO) ITA Italy
Superfinal
Portugal POR 1 - 3 RUS Russia
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