EBSL Superfinal Torredembarra 2013
09 Aug 2013

Division A becomes clearer

Portugal secures Superfinal, as Spain takes the lead in Group A, but will need a victory over Russia tomorrow

Portugal earns spot in the season decider

Portugal played extremely well on Thursday and looked to continue that trend against a Poland side that also won their opener. Portugal was able to shut down the Polish team in a 6-2 win, and advance to the season decider, as no one in Group B will be able to parallel their registers. Poland went down early, fought back, but eventually allowed the Portuguese to get behind their defense too often. Portugal scored a number of ways and used a three goal second period to carry them through the match.

Portugal only took 20 seconds to impose their will on Poland when Belchior scored to put Portugal up 1-0. Poland took their chances but the early going did not give them many opportunities and Portugal eventually scored again to put themselves up by two. Under a minute after Portugal?s second goal, Poland got on the board with their own strike, putting themselves in a better position going forward, only down 2-1.

The early going in the second period belonged to Portugal as they scored in the opening minute, just like in the first period and they went up 3-1. The two goal deficit did not stop Poland from attempting to throw their weight around and being aggressive but that did not change the outlook of the game as they could not overcome the deficit early in the period. A spectacular individual effort from Coimbra saw the defenseman get past two Polish defenders, maintain control of the ball, and then poke the ball past the keeper to give his team a 3 goal lead. Portugal would add one more goal in the period, taking a 5-1 lead into the final period.

Narciso?s lads kept the pace very fast and Poland was unable to catch up as Portugal added a goal early in the period,  a perfectly-placed looping chip shot that barely went over the head of the Polish keeper, making the score 6-1. Poland definitively won the period, scoring once and holding the Portuguese to one goal as well but the second period was the deciding period in this exciting match.

Portugal has looked phenomenal in their first two matches; an opening day win on Thursday and a 6-2 win over Poland today. They now have 6 points and can clinch a spot in the Superfinal Championship on Sunday with a win tomorrow over Ukraine. Poland will have a shot to earn three more points tomorrow against Switzerland.

Goals: 0-1: Belchior, min. 1 (1); 0-2: Jordan, min. 7 (1); 1-2: Saganowski, min. 6 (1); 1-3: Madjer, min. 11 (2); 1-4: Coimbra, min. 7 (2); 1-5: Jose Maria, min. 6 (2); 1-6: Jordan, min. 10 (3); 2-6: Saganowski, min. 2 (3).

Spain handles The Netherlands

Many scenarios could put each team in the Superfinal championship match on Sunday but the easiest way to the title is to win outright. Both Spain and The Netherlands wanted to prove they deserved to be in the final. The Dutch lost a thrilling match to Russia on Thursday, but still controlled their own destiny. Spain beat Italy in the last match on Thursday and the 5-2 win over The Netherlands made their path much easier.

Spain and The Netherlands both looked like teams capable of taking Europe´s most coveted Beach Soccer title early in the match. Spain scored first on a rocket strike from Spain´s keeper four minutes into the game to put them up 1-0. It didn?t take long for Spain to score again as they were awarded a penalty shot and the hosts made sure they didn?t miss, going up 2-0. It was even shorter between Spain´s second goal and the first for the Dutch; Holland took the kick-off and nailed a shot into the net. The Netherlands showed resolve in keeping the Spanish attack quiet for most of the period and their offense did its job as well by scoring again in the period, tying the game up at 2. Spain´s Llorenç added a jaw-dropping bicycle goal that flew into the upper corner of the goal that put Spain back ahead, 3-2, heading into the second period. 

Spain tried to distance themselves as best they could from a very determined Holland side and local star, Llorenç scored in the first minute of the second period, his second of the match, to put his squad up by 2, 4-2. Spain maintained a full pressure mentality, constantly attacking and not giving the Dutch players any space to handle to the ball. This pressure allowed Spain to score again with four minutes remaining to go up 5-2, which is how the period would end, setting the stage for the all-important third and final period.

Everything was on the line in the final period and both teams tightened up their defense, not allowing each other to get good looks at the goal and the period remained scoreless. An open look at the goal was not a luxury that came easily for Spain or The Netherlands in the third period. Defense is not something to be taken lightly and the defensive coverage from both teams tonight was stellar, not just, but especially in the third period.

The 5-2 win over Holland and the highly coveted three points give Spain exactly what they came for, a shot at the EBSL Superfinal title on Sunday they will need to confirm tomorrow, against Russia. The Netherlands took two tough losses but will have two more matches including one tomorrow against Italy to show their mettle.

Goals: 1-0: Dona, min. 8 (1); 2-0: Antonio, min. 6 (1); 2-1: V. Gessel, min. 6 (1); 2-2: V. Gessel, min. 2 (1); 3-2: Llorenç, min. 2 (1); 4-2: Llorenç, min. 11 (2); 5-2: Antonio, min. 4 (2).

Switzerland in top form

The defending European champs, Switzerland, needed to win to keep their hopes alive and repeat title and Ukraine, after a disappointing loss on Thursday needed to win just as badly to make it to the title game on Sunday. Switzerland did not forget how to play like champions and they reminded everyone with a 6-5 win over a feisty Ukraine teams that was down big but almost managed the thrilling comeback.

Opportunities to score were very limited in the first period as both defenses were very stingy and did not want to give up the first goal. It came late in the first period as Ukraine was called for a penalty on their half of the field and the Swiss striker Stankovic did not miss on the ensuing kick. Switzerland needed only a few seconds to see their lead disappear as Ukraine struck on the kick-off, tying the game at 1. The Swiss used that as motivation and less than a minute later, they went on a breakaway and Stankovic was fouled in the open field by the Ukrainian keeper, who was given a red card and sent off. Stankovic connected on the kick and gave his team its second goal of the period. The Swiss scoring was not over yet and they added another two goals to end the period with a score of 4-1, Switzerland.

The second period was calm for a few minutes but that changed in the 7th minute when Switzerland added another goal to make the score 6-1. Ukraine needed a boost and they nearly got it less than a minute later when they were fouled on a rush, but the direct kick that followed was blocked by the Swiss keeper. Near the end of the second period Ukraine got a break of their own when their captain, I. Borsuk, was left open and netted his and Ukraine?s´ second goal of the match. Not long after, the Swiss captain responded with his second goal as well, restoring the Switzerland?s´ lead to four goals again, 6-2, and that is how the second period ended.

The third period began with another goal for the Ukraine captain, giving him a hat trick and getting his team within three goals. Ukraine did not lose hope and were constantly putting pressure on the Swiss defense and Ukraine broke through again in the middle of the period, scoring to get within two goals. 6-4, advantage Switzerland. The Swiss would not relinquish the lead despite the constant attempts by their opponents. Ukraine got one more goal with under a minute to go to intensify the late game drama but the game ended with Switzerland still holding a one goal lead. The deficit of four goals was too much for Ukraine to overcome.

The three points in the 6-5 victory over Ukraine puts Switzerland in the best spot they could hope for after losing their opening match on Thursday. Ukraine played valiantly but was unable to earn any points in the first two days. The Ukrainians will not be crowned Europe´s best this season but they will have the chance at slight redemption tomorrow and Sunday.

Goals: 1-0: Stankovic, min. 4 (1); 1-1: I. Borsuk, min. 4 (1); 2-1: Stankovic, min. 3 (1); 3-1: Mo, min. 1 (1); 4-1: Misev, min. 1 (1); 5-1: Leu, min. 7 (2). 5-2: I. Borsuk, min. 3 (2); 6-2: Mo, min. 2 (2); 6-3: I. Borsuk, min. 9 (3); 6-4: Zborovskyi, min. 5 (3); 6-5: Budzko, min. 1 (3).

Italy uses overtime to defeat World Champions

With Russia coming off a great win against Holland and Italy, losing a tough one against Spain, both Beach Soccer powerhouses wanted to establish a rhythm to keep the other team off balance. The Italians surprised the Russians 6-5 in overtime, after being down 4-1, to win their first match of the tournament. Italy was dealt a tough draw but rebounded spectacularly against Russia and will use that confidence going forward in the tournament. Russia was up nearly the entire match but ended up losing a neck-and-neck match.

The first frame was played at a frenetic pace and two goals were scored early in the period, one by Italy and one by Russia, which helped to stop the other team from getting into a groove and cruising. The Russians made the most of their direct kicks and crushed two long range kicks off of Italian penalties to give themselves a two goal lead midway through the period. The oace slowed down a bit but the action did not stop as both teams were traversing the pitch in search of more goals. The first period finished without any more goals and Russia leading 3-1.

In the first period, both sides made very few mistakes and the offenses looked great. In the second period, there were a small amount of mistakes also but the defenses were great, with amazing saves from the keepers and swarming defense. Italy regained its form and scored after giving up three straight, to make the score 4-2, Russia, and less than a minute after that, Italy scored again on a penalty kick to get the azzurri within one goal at 4-3. The Russian squad kept up the extremely fast paced, demanding the ball quickly and rushing to dead balls as fast as they could. The speed of the match was only slowed by the second period break which ended with Russia up 4-3.

The final period was the perfect stage for Beach Soccer as two of the world´s best were in a close battle in the premier European Beach Soccer tournament. The passion for both teams was palpable and skirmished, shots bouncing off the post, yellow cards, and yells of excitement all added to the energy and quality of the match. Late into the period no one was able to score, Italy could not find the equalizer and Russia could not find the insurance goal and the score was at a standstill, 4-3 Russia until there was one minute left in the game. Italy struck on a wonderful strike that leveled the game at 4. The third period ended tied at 4 and the match headed to overtime. Overtime was very close and neither team was giving the other any space. Russia scored first but the Italians answered with one minute left when Palmacci scored a hat trick and tied the match at 5. With 30 seconds left, Italy´s hero, Palmacci scored again on a beautiful bicycle kick to send his team to the winners´ circle.

The 5-6 win for Italy over the current world champions was an exciting match and perfect bounce back from their loss to Spain on Thursday. Russia snatched defeat from the jaws of victory and will look to avoid another letdown going forward in the tournament.

Goals: 0-1: Gori, min. 9 (1); 1-1: Shishin, min. 9 (1); 2-1: Shishin, min. 7 (1); 3-1: Shkarin, min. 5 (1); 1-4: Peremitin, min. 6 (2); 2-4: Palmacci, min. 5 (2); 3-4: Gori, min. 5 (2); 4-4: Palmacci, min. 1 (3); 5-4: Shkarin, min. 2 (OT); 5-5: Palmacci, min. 1 (OT); 5-6: Palmacci, min. 1 (OT).


Match Results:
Friday, 9th of August, 2013
Switzerland 6-5 Ukraine
Russia 5-6 Italy
Poland 2-6 Portugal
Spain 5-2 The Netherlands

Upcoming Matches:
Saturday, 10th of August, 2013
15:15 ? Portugal vs Ukraine
16:30 ? Italy vs The Netherlands
17:45 ? Poland vs Switzerland
19:00 ? Russia vs Spain

September 08, 2020 - September 13, 2020
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Round of 16
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