The SELECT Futsal Premier League Grand Final showdown between Premiers Inner West Magic and defending Champions Dural Warriors takes place this Saturday as the main event at Valentine Sports Park (5.30pm) alongside eight other matches set to take shape for Futsal’s elite competition.
With the first match kicking off at 9am which will see the Inner West Magic tackle the Enfield Rovers at 9am for the 12 Boys title – eight other age groups will soon follow what will be a fantastic day of elite Futsal action.
Open Men’s Preview
Inner West Magic v Dural Warriors
There’s certainly plenty of fire between these two sides. Even though Warriors boast a commanding head-to-head record winning 14 of 19 clashes (including all five finals meetings), Magic have inflicted two of Dural’s biggest league losses in the past three seasons (7-2 and 5-1, and both at The Centre).
Then there’s the heavy playoff experience of Dural’s Greg Giovenali and Inner West’s Chris Zeballos, who have both scored 11 post-season goals – the second highest tally from players in finals (still shy of Quake superstar Mark Symington’s astonishing 18).
The Warriors line-up contains some heavy-hitters with six of premier league’s top-25 all-time scorers in Greg Giovenali (77 goals), Bruno Pivato (41), Nathan Niski (38), Wade Giovenali (38), Vic Koutsoufis (33) and Blake Rosier (32).
Having said that, Magic duo Daniel Fogarty (58) and Chris Zeballos (55) are sixth and seventh on the list, while Greg Giovenali is Dural’s only top-10 entrant, and the Inner West defensive wall has always been formidable (they conceded just 25 times in 14 rounds, the Warriors leaked 36).
Former Magic player Bruno Pivato is wreaking havoc against his former club having scored a hat-trick in Dural’s recent semi-final win against Inner West to follow a brace in the previous match-up, and he scored another double in last summer’s fixture.
And what a showdown between two of this summer’s red-hot players: Dural dagger Vic Kousoufis has scored 15 goals while Inner West weapon Daniel Fogarty boasts a dozen successful strikes – both will surely keep the keepers on their toes.
Dural coach Rob Varela was licking his lips ahead of a top-two clash for the grand final trophy. “We are looking forward to a very tough game,” he said.
“Inner West are an excellent team with some fantastic players across the court and very well coached [by Steve Knight]. They will be hungry and motivated to break our streak and that will make them extremely difficult to beat.”
“We go into the game with the knowledge that if we perform to the best of our ability we will be able to push them hard.
“It should be a cracker of a game and I would urge all Futsal lovers to get to Valentine Sports Park to witness what promises to be a classic encounter between two great teams.”
Matteo Maiorana was also ready for a staunch battle between two of the competition’s biggest rivals.
“Here we are once again with a Magic versus Dural final,” he said. “I don’t have any doubt that from a mutual standpoint it’s the grand final everyone wanted to see. This fixture always promises to be entertaining and extremely competitive and with free fireworks as part of the entertainment.”
“Both clubs are extremely proud and the competition stems all the way through from the coaches to the supporters and players. Hopefully we have a fantastic spectacle!”
“I have no doubt our boys will be up for the game and I have no doubt that the Dural boys will be up for the game. With so many Futsalroos on the court it promises to be the best chapter yet in this massive rivalry.”
All matches will be LIVE STREAMED on the official Football NSW Facebook page so keep an eye out for that from 9am.
Click below to view the official Match Day program