Qantas Australian Men’s Beach Football Team Head Coach Airton Andrioli has selected a squad of 12-players for the upcoming FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup 2009 Asian Qualifiers to be played in Dubai from 7 to 11 November 2009.
The Qantas Australian Men’s Beach Football Team will be captained by NSW Premier League Championship winner George Souris who, along with Steve Karavatakis, Jim Bakis, Andrew Mailer and Stacey Alogdellis, were part of the last Australian team that participated at the 2005 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup in Rio de Janeiro.
The remainder of the squad is drawn from the ranks of the South Australian and NSW state league competitions as well as futsal representative teams.
Airton Andrioli has high hopes for his team that has only recently taken up the beach version of the sport.
“Obviously our goal is to qualify for FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup.
“We have five players who have experience playing beach football at this level before and we do have a blend of players from the state league and futsal competitions.
“Beach Football is a very different game to the eleven-a-side and futsal versions. Players need to be extremely fit and technically gifted to excel. There’s also a different set of rules for players to adapt to, which have similarities to futsal but also many differences.
“Once we arrive in Dubai we will have two friendly matches to test ourselves before the tournament begins.
“I have confidence in my players that if we play to our strengths and strategy we can go far in the tournament and achieve our goal of qualification,” concluded Andrioli
Although the draw for the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup 2009 Asian Qualifiers has not been released, it is understood that the 8-nation tournament will involve two groups of four teams. The top two teams from the group phase will enter the semi-finals phase, with the winners of the semi-finals progressing to the final and will also qualify for the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup 2009.
The FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup 2009 will be played in Dubai from 16 to 22 November 2009 and involves 16 nations including United Arab Emirates, Portugal, Uruguay, Solomon Islands, Spain, Côte d’Ivoire, El Salvador, Russia, Costa Rica, Argentina, Italy, Brazil, Nigeria and Switzerland.
The Qantas Australian Men’s Beach Football team will depart for Dubai on 1 November and will play friendly matches against a UAE representative team on the 3rd November and the Bahrain National Beach Soccer Team on the 4th November with both to be played at Jumeirah Beach.
Qantas Australian Men’s Beach Football Squad
FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup 2009 Asian Qualifiers
Jumeirah Beach, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
7-11 November 2009.
Stacy Alogdellis – PCYC Parramatta Eagles
Jim Bakis – Sutherland Sharks
Jonathon Cook – South Adelaide Panthers
Peter Crevani – St George
Joshua Da Palma – Uncontracted
Ivo De Jesus – Sydney Wanderers
Steve Karavatakis – Sutherland Sharks
Andrew Mailer – Manly United
Danny Martinez – Sydney Wanderers
Michael Matricciani – Campbelltown City
Khalil Popal – Uncontracted
George Souris – Sutherland Sharks