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08 Jul 2018
Russia see off Spain with two late golazos
The Women’s Euro Beach Soccer Cup has a new champion, as last year’s winners finish in fourth following final day play-offs
Russia left it very late in today’s final against former Women’s Euro Beach Soccer Cup Champions, Spain, but after a tournament of dominant performances, the third winners of the competition were deserven
Czech Republic v Netherlands (5th place play-off)
After finishing bottom of their groups, all that the Czech Republic and the Netherlands could hope for out of today’s match was a fifth place finish. Despite playing two games in one day yesterday, Oosterbroek‘s energetic Dutch side showed little sign of fatigue, attacking from the get-go.
With three minutes of the first period to go, Moudou showed great strength to power through several defenders and poke home the advantage.
An evenly matched contest generally, it was the Swiss who went into the first break trailing by a single goal. Visek’s side came close but an incredible back-tracking save from Martijn between the sticks kept her side in the lead. The Czechs just couldn’t come up with a reply and as the minutes of the second period ran out, the Dutch defence looked as solid as ever.
But almost as soon as the third period started, a lifeline came in the form of a free kick just outside of the area, which Pilouskova despatched clinically. Back on level terms there was everything to play for.
The Netherlands had their share of chances to retake the lead and they hit the bar twice, one being a long range shot from keeper, Tess van der Flier. But the deadlock remained intact and after the game went to extra time it took a last minute Culova penalty to win the game for the Swiss who will final the Euro Beach Soccer Cup in fifth position.
Goals: 0-1: Moudou min. 3 (1); 1-1: Pilouskova min. 11 (3); 2-1: Culova min. 0 (ET);
England v Switzerland (3rd place play-off)
After their hopes of defending their Euro Beach Soccer Cup title were dashed by a highly clinical Spanish team yesterday, England now had the chance to finish in third position with a win against Switzerland who had suffered a similar fate the day before, at the hands of a Russian side who would play Spain in the final later.
Heer, the Swiss number ten, opened the scoring in the ninth minute but the game remained open with England creating plenty of chances. It was just a matter of minutes before they managed to convert one, as Hillier volleyed in a flick-on from close range.
Level pegging, but not for long, as Gruter netted just a minute later to put Steinemann’s Swiss in control once more. The first period ended with Switzerland enjoying a one-goal lead but Northeast’s ladies weren’t out of it yet.
Midway through the second period there was a sudden goal rush, with both teams doubling their tally and the scoreline shifted to 2-4. This opened up the gap between the teams and Switzerland now had a two-goal advantage going into the third and final period.
In three periods of the same 1-2 score, the Swiss ended the game three goals ahead of their opponents, as the match finished at 3-6. An impressive performance topped off by a sublime strike by keeper Kehrli in the dying minutes, earned Switzerland a third place finish while last year’s champions settle for fourth.
Goals: 0-1: Heer min. 9 (1); 1-1: Hillier min. 5 (1); 1-2: Gruter min. 4 (1); 1-3: Morger min. 5 (2); 2-3: Cheshire min. 5 (2); 2-4: Gruter min. 4 (2); 2-5: Schenk min. 10 (3); 2-5: Cheshire min. 8 (3); 3-6: Kehrli min. 5 (3);
Spain v Russia (Final)
Spain had defeated last year’s champions of the Women’s Euro Beach Soccer Cup, England, on their journey through the group stages to the final and Leonov’s Russian ladies had won two emphatic victories against Switzerland and the Netherlands.
Each had expressed real dominance in their previous performances and were well deserving of their places in the final.
This fixture had all the making of a close contest, but lots of well-put together attacks and some disciplined defensive work frustrated both sets of players, neither able to break the other. After a goalless opening period, it was obvious that neither side wanted to be the first to slip up. Some super stops at both ends of the pitch had the crowd on their feet, but the scoreboard remained unchanged.
When the second period ended goalless too, extra time and beyond was looking more and more likely.
But then, the breakthrough finally arrived for the Russians, who had been knocking on the door for some time. A sublime strike from Cherniakova saw her team mates go wild and it was followed up by another golazo from Fedorova five minutes later and Spain, after giving it their all, were resigned to accept their position as runners-up.
Goals: 0-1: Cherniakova min. 7 (3); 0-2: Fedorova min. 2 (3);
Miss any of the tournament? Catch up on all the Euro Beach Soccer League Nazaré 2018 action, right here.
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