The clubs hoping to join the European Championships play their first matches on Friday
Nazaré has been the hub of European beach soccer over the last few years, and tomorrow the first of three top club competitions returns to the Portuguese coast.
The Euro Winners Challenge will feature some of the biggest teams on the continent and the world’s best players, as the likes of Brazil captain Catarino, UAE captain Walid, Japan’s Shusei Yamauchi and dynamic German duo, Marcel Nowak and Joscha Metzler take to the pitch in search of European beach soccer glory.
As well as seasoned Euro Winners clubs, debutants are also ready to cut their teeth on the sand of Portugal, including local club Nazaré 2022.
The Euro Winners Challenge will run from Friday 3 until Thursday 9 June, and the victors in final will win a place among the last eight teams in the 2022 Euro Winners Cup.
Clubs to watch
Real Münster, with their injection of Emirati and Brazilian firepower, as well as Germany’s top national players, are amongst the favourites for many to reach the Euro Winners Cup through the Preliminary event of the Euro Winners Challenge.
Gabriel Mohagheghi’s side has reached the final four in the last two editions of the European championships, and will be looking to impress in Portugal once more.
Meanwhile, more Brazilians bolster the roster of Israeli club Rosh Haayin, with the Canarinho captain Catarino wearing the armband for them in Nazaré. He is also joined by fellow Brazilians Edson Hulk, who returns for his second appearance with the club, Ze Lucas and keeper Bobo.
What to expect on Day 1
French side Minots de Marseille will kick off the action against Nazaré club GD Os Nazarenos at 9:45h local time. After that, first-timers FC Vion from Slovakia will take on Portuguese side GD Alfarim and following that match, CCD Portomendo (POR) will meet FC Genappe ASBL from Belgium, who have none other than Bernardo Saraiva, the son of beach soccer legend Madjer, in their ranks.
The 2021 semi-finalists Real Münster’s first test will come against Vila Flor at 15:00h, and the other club to watch in the Challenge, Rosh Haayin, will take on Casa Benfica Loures B at 16:15h.
Two regulars in the Euro Winners Cup, Greek sides Kefallinia and Napoli Patron, will also be in action in the afternoon, and the opening matchday in Nazaré will close with Portuguese sides Casa Benfica Viseu against O Sotao B meeting at 19:00h.
For full details on the Euro Winners Challenge, including groups, fixtures, results and standings, head to beachsoccer.com.