Futsalroos claim comprehensive win over Qatar

The Futsalroos celebrate a goal from captain Gerg Giovenali against Qatar at the 2016 AFC Futsal Championship. Images courtesy of Mark Seeto
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The Futsalroos are through to the quarter-finals of the AFC Futsal Championship after notching a 5-2 win over Qatar at the Uzbekistan Stadium on Saturday night.

Captain Greg Giovenali and Tobias Seeto both scored doubles for the Aussies, after Daniel Fogarty opened the scoring with less than two minutes on the clock.

The result means Australia are through to the last eight for a sixth consecutive time, regardless of the result of their final Group D match against Japan.

In a frenetic opening the Futsalroos shot out of the blocks, with an early shot from Seeto resulting in an attacking corner that saw Forgarty convert from a tight angle.

Qatar hit back almost immediately to level the scores; however some great team work from the re-start ended with the skipper putting his side 2-1 up just 30 seconds later.

Seeto was the next to score, running the length of the court on a counter attack from a Qatar corner to ensure his side would carry a 3-1 lead into the break.

Giovenali put the Futsalroos further in front after a shot from Qatar had been blocked off the line but they soon pulled a goal back to make it 4-2 with plenty of time left in the game.

Qatar put the Australian defence under immense pressure in the closing stages, using their powerplay and going to a 5th man with five minutes to play.

However some great saves from goalkeepers Angelo Konstantinou and Roberto Maiorana repelled wave after wave of attack before a fine individual effort from Seeto sealed the 5-2 result.

Coach Rob Varela was thrilled with his side’s overall performance at full-time, in particular the way they executed the tactics that were discussed in the build-up.

“We’re delighted with the victory against a class team,” said Varela. 

“We went into the game with a game plan aiming to exploit their game plan which we have analysed from their previous match against Japan.”

“I’m happy with the intensity and focus in the build up to the game, which led into the game itself. 

“We kept our composure under pressure and were able to stick to our game plan. This was capped off by scoring some fantastic goals.”

The Futsalroos next play Japan on Monday night to decide who tops their Group D with both sides already guaranteed of progressing to the knock-out stage.

Images courtesy of Mark Seeto