The Euro Winners Cup champions added the 2020 Russian Cup to their cabinet on Sunday
Kristall downed Kronstadt-Promenade in the final on Sunday, scoring no less than 13 goals in the process and cruising to clinch their fifth Russian Cup title.
A beach soccer season like no other may have started with relative disappointment for Angelo Schirinzi’s Kristall, as they managed just a third-place finish in the Russian Beach Soccer Championship, but it’s been a different story since then…
The St. Petersburg club dominated in the 2020 edition of the Euro Winners Cup, and although the final victory was tight against the reigning champions SC Braga, they reclaimed the European title, which they hadn’t won since 2015.
There was little rest for the players, as no sooner did they return from Portugal when they were in training for the Russian Cup. They went unbeaten throughout the tournament, but their biggest victory actually came in the final.
Sunday saw Kristall hand a heavy final-day defeat to Kronstadt-Promenade, who actually net two early goals to lead briefly in the opening period. The Baltic club were surprise finalists, having beaten CSKA Moscow 4-2 in the semi-finals, but they were no match for the Brazilian-bolstered powerhouse of Kristall.
The European champions turned the screw on their opponents, as Vladislav Zharikov netted no less than six of the eventual 13 goals that Kristall would score, winning himself the Top Scorer trophy in the process.
In fact, all of the individual awards were scooped by Schirinzi’s men, with Datinha winning the MVP, Chuzhkov (currently the world’s best goalkeeper) claiming the Best Goalkeeper, while the Best Assistant was shared by the Brazilian duo, Rodrigo and Mauricinho, who had seven assists each.
In the third-place play off, Spartak just overcame their Moscow rivals CSKA, thanks to a late winner by Russian international Fedor Zemskov.
Kristall 13 – 3 Kronstadt-Promenade (FINAL)
Spartak 3 – 2 CSKA (3rd-place playoff)
MVP – Datinha
Top Scorer – Vladislav Zharikov (11)
Best Goalkeeper – Maksym Chuzhkov
Best Assistants – Rodrigo and Mauricinho (7)
Photo: Alexey Leshchenko