Still undefeated Moldova and Turkiye will contend the final while Greece and Kazakhstan battle for third
– Moldova make the final after defeating Greece
– Turkiye edge 22-goal match to set up showdown against the hosts
– Turkiye’s Baris draws level with Katsoulis in scoring race
Locals Moldova will meet Turkiye in Sunday’s final to see who makes makes the 2023 European Games and, of course, who lifts the title in Chisinau.
Greece.and Kazakhstan will battle for third, while the Ethniki’s Katsoulis was matched by the Turkiye captain Baris, who hit goal number six in the semi-final.
Moldova put five past Greece to reach the final
Moldova still had not tasted an EBSL defeat in their state-of-the-art stadium, and when they went up against Greece in Saturday’s semi-final, they were the first to draw blood as Florea pounded a freekick into the top corner in the opening period.
Istrati, yet again, starred the Ethniki threatened to equalise, but the fan favourite stopped shot after shot and then provided Borovschi with Moldova’s second. Turta took it to three in the final period, and soon after Florea bagged his second to make it four.
Greece refused to lie down and accept defeat though, and would break through eventually thanks to Tsitsaris, who rifled a low shot in off the base of the post to pull one back.
The goal of the game, however, went to captain Cojocari to found the top corner with a shot from distance to wrap up the victory, and an all-important place in the final on Sunday, where the Selectionata will face Turkiye.
Turkiye overcome Kazakhstan in semi-final goal-fest
Two early goals, one bundled in after just seconds and the next a signature bicycle kick from star number 10 Cem Keskin, had Turkiye ahead within minutes in the first semi-final bout of the day.
Yershin pounded in a volley from close range to pull Kazakhstan back into the match, but another incredible overhead, this time from Emrah, restored the Crescent Star’s two-goal cushion.
For the rest of the match the teams were neck and neck, drawing the second period 3-3 and then, meaning that Ozan Yilmaz’s men started the final period with their two-goal advantage intact.
In the third period, the floodgates opened as no less than 12 goals flew in as Kazakhstan fought desperately to draw level once again. But clinical finishing from Baris, Emrah and Cem Keskin – each of whom netted a hat-trick – saw the final whistle sound with the score at an incredible 12-10!
The Hawks never recovered from going two behind in the first period, and will now face Greece to contend third place, and Turkiye go up against the hosts for the title of the Euro Beach Soccer League Moldova 2022.
Romania take playoff win over Three Lions
The Tricolorii had needed an Extra Time comeback to down England in their group game, but Romania went ahead on Saturday, through Alexandru and Boata in the opening passage of play. This tight encounter promised goals from the get-go and they soon came flowing in, with English defender Scott Lawson hitting three before the final whistle. In the end, it was Boata’s brace which separated the sides, as a 12-goal thriller was edged by the Tricolorii, with a final score of seven goals to five.
Vasiljevs double downs Denmark
Latvia had dashed Danish dreams of promotion to Division A on Friday, and the next day, in the tussle for finishing places, they dealt a second blow, winning 3-1 to keep hopes of a fifth-place finish alive. Two goals from captain Vasiljevs either side of the second break – including one directly from a corner – were enough to see off Denmark on Day 4 in Moldova, and Latvia will now compete against Romania for fifth place tomorrow.
Hellman’s late winner seals second victory for Norway
Norway built on their victory yesterday with a close win over Lithuania in their playoff match. Makutunovičius took the lead but captain Li equalised for Norway in the second period. It was that man Hellman again who would make the difference, smashing in the winner deep into the final period to set up a battle for ninth against Georgia on Sunday.
Malta edge Georgia in playoffs
An initially uneventful tie burst into vibrant beach soccer brilliance in the final stage as four or five Goal of the Tournament contenders were put away in the playoff match between Malta and Georgia. But it was amazing braces from Diakvnishvili, the Georgian number 11, and Makharadze the goalkeeper which won the points and kept hopes of a ninth-place finish alive.
Moldova 5-1 Greece
Turkiye 12-10 Kazakhstan
Romania 7-5 England (5th – 8th)
Latvia 3-1 Denmark (5th – 8th)
Norway 2-1 Lithuania (9th – 12th)
Malta 5-6 Georgia (9th – 12th)
For full details on the EBSL Moldova, including fixtures, results and standings, head to beachsoccer.com.