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12 May 2012
Just one goal makes the difference...
Sporting, FC Barcelona, Seattle Sounders and Lokomotiv clinch first points in a terribly balanced opening to Mundialito de Clubes
Sporting beats Corinthinas in Mundialito opening
Current runner-ups Sporting Portugal caused a big upset on hosts Corinthians in the opening match of the II Mundialito de Clubes Beach Soccer, taking place as of today until next Saturday May 19th. Thanks to a solid third period, the Leões clinched the points in a really balanced fixture, something really usual in a competition facing the best players and clubs in the world, to get ahead lead in group C.
Corinthians were the ones to fire the opener in, with World Champion Krash tapping in a smart corner kick serve by Buru. That was mid first period, and, mainly thanks to Mão’s performances, the Timão would manage that advantage at their hands until the end of the first leg. Right after the whistle for the second period kick-off, though, Alan raised the equalizer with a terrific free kick shot.
Again with a dead ball move, Klebinho would sweep the Paulista side ahead again, only to see that advantage vanish in just one second, the one Madjer took to whip the ball in at the very next move. Third period would have a more outstanding white and green colour, with Belchior and Fernando DDI making it 4-2 and giving their opponents just two minutes. That was not enough time to turn that score around, specially with such an inspired Graça today. Only Buru could try something, but Corinthians third hit came when there were only 8 seconds left on the clock.
Goals: 0-1: Kras, min. 7 (1); 1-1: Alan, min. 11(2); 1-2: Klebinho, min. 5 (2); 2-2: Madjer, min. 5 (2); 3-2: Belchior, min. 6 (3); 4-2: Fernando DDI, min. 2(3); 4-3: Buru, min. 0 (3)
FC Barcelona takes revenge on Flamengo in first match in Group B
The Quarterfinals defeat against Flamengo in last edition was something etched in FC Barcelona’s memory. Fate gave them the chance to get rid of that bitter taste at the earliest stage possible in this 2012 edition of the Mundialito de Clubes. Despite a significant 3-0 advantage, the ‘blaugranas’ needed to fight hard for the points that get them on top of group B, with the same points and goal difference than Seattle Sounders.
Not many goal chances happened at any of the goals during first minutes of the game, with both sides acknowledging that such a powder-packed opponent would punish any mistake they might commit. It was not until the last minute of the first period that the Torres twins build up the first goal for the Catalan side. A powerful ball sent by Cristian was decisively deflected by Javi’s chest to end up at the back of Robertinho’s nets.
That goal made FC Barcelona grow. The ‘cule’ side enjoyed more ball possession and better chances from that moment on, something they materialized by means of an amazing free kick by Amarelle and a hard-fought hit by Shishin.
The 0-3, and specially the way Barça was handling the game pointed that the points were to stay at their hands. But it was not as easy as that, and they need to sweat a dramatic third period out to secure the victory. During that last 12 minutes, Pampero and Bueno cut the distance to 2-3, and, with six minutes yet to go, everything could happen. Amarelle’s side tightened their defensive system up, though, and, supported by a safe Bukhlistkiy clinched a prestige win against last year bronze holders.
Goals: 0-1: Javi Torres, min. 0, min. 0 (1); 0-2: Amarelle, min. 4 (2); 0-3: Shishin, min. 1 (2); 1-3: Pampero, min. 9 (3); 2-3: Souza, min. 6 (3);
Agustín chips last ball in to seal Seattle win over São Paulo
After their excellent performance last year, it would not be accurate to say Seattle Sounders surprised any opponent at the II Mundialito de Clubes Beach Soccer. Banking on great players such as Gil, Agustín Ruiz, Moreira or Plata, the Marcelo Mendes coached North-American side have arguments enough to make anyone’s life difficult. Something they did again today against hosts Sao Paulo, clinching a last minute victory to follow FC Barcelona’s steps in Group B.
Arena de Guarapiranga witnessed another balanced fight between two contenders that know that such a competitive competition does not forgive mistakes. And, again, both sides exchanged strokes to reach the last minutes with a leveled score. Cati hit first for the North-American, only to see Dannilo and Rafinha change things around. Plata, at the end of the second period, made it 2-2 for the final assault.
The match seemed destined to the extra time, and clock was ticking down towards the final 2-2, but there came Agustín Ruiz, Salvadorian captain, to give the fixture a brilliant ending. After fighting to protect a ball, he found it back after a combination with teammate Morgan Plata, and magically chipped it over the goalkeeper, having the three points fly to his teams hands and making hosts expectations crumble.
Goals: 0-1: Cati, min. 3(1); 1-1: Dannilo, min. 11 (2); 2-1: Rafinha, min. 7 (2); 2-2: Plata, min. 1 (2); 2-3: Agustín Ruiz, min. 1 (3);
Lokomotiv takes the lead in Group C after beating Al Ahli
Lokomotiv has secured, at least until tomorrow, the lead of Group C, the so-called Group of death. The Russian victory over Al Ahli, which got blurred during last period, gave Leonov’s side the three points plus a +2 goal difference which, although unbelievably, was the biggest difference today at the Arena de Guarapiranga.
After a first period in which only a latter hit by Daniel bent the Arab resistance, things got a strong red colour when Leonov and Shaykov sealed the 0-3 for Lokomotiv. Later on, Makarov scored the fourth for his side, and the match seemed to be turning into a placid afternoon for the Muscovite. Notwithstanding, the Al Ahli breed surfaced, and a magic trick by Rami, blasting the ball in from the corner kick point, followed by a well-aimed shot by Borer, were worth the 2-4 for the Hilal-steered squad.
Things got no further than that, and Lokomotiv retained the points, and meaningfully, the two-goal difference to climb to the highest place in Group C, the one they will need to defend against Sporting Portugal.
Goals: 0-1: Daniel, min. 1 (2); 0-2: Leonov, min. 11(2); 0-3: Shaykov, min. 11 (2); 0-4: Makarov, min. 9 (3); 1-4: Rami, min. 7 (3); 2-4: Borer, min. 5 (3);
10:15 – Sporting Portugal 4-3 Corinthians
11:45 – Flamengo 2-3 Barcelona
13:00 – São Paulo 2-3 Seattle Sounders
14:15 – Al-Ahli 2-4 Lokomotiv
Matches for tomorrow:
Sunday, May 13th, 2012
10:45 – Sporting Portugal vs. Lokomotiv
12:00 – Vasco vs. Santos
13:15 – Corinthians vs. Al-Ahli
14:30 – Milan vs. Boca Juniors