Five-a-side futsal scoring goals on and off the pitch (WA)

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thewest.com.au

A faster and more action-packed version of soccer is taking hold in Perth.

Futsal, a five-a-side game played on small outdoor or indoor hard courts, has grown exponentially in WA in the past few years.

Jess Lindquist, of Wattle Grove, will play in this year’s women’s futsal world cup in Barcelona.

Futsal players Jess Lindquist, Finlay Alexander, Harry Alexander and Felicity Lindquist. Picture: Michael Wilson

When she started playing futsal nine years ago, there were few teams in the competition, let alone female teams.

Jess’ daughter Felicity, 15, will play in two youth squads in Brazil, and has witnessed the growth of the sport.

“When I was in Year 7 my mum played futsal and they only had guys’ teams,” she said.

Now the sport has a thriving female and male league in WA.

West Coast Futsal development manager Greg Farrell moved to WA from Brisbane in early 2015 to grow the sport.

“When I moved here there were about six junior teams and 140 senior teams, now there are 38 junior teams and about 200 senior teams,” he said.

Mr Farrell said because the sport was still developing in WA, sponsorship was hard to come by.

“They have to pay their own way to get to tournaments and training camps,” he said. “We do a lot of Bunnings barbecues and chocolate drives.”

Nedlands player Harry Alexander, 13, will also represent his country in Barcelona in May.

“It’s fast and you’ve got to think quickly — there’s no time to stand around,” he said.

More at westcoastfutsal.org.au

By Claire Tyrrell

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