Having finished sixth during the 2016 edition in Catania, Italy are now set to host the Euro Beach Soccer League Superfinal & Promotion Final once again.
The event taking place in Terracina will be the final act of European Championship football this season, beginning tomorrow at 08:30 CEST and then finishing on Sunday 17th September with the final at 17:30. Following five initial stages played all across the continent, this event in Terracina will now see a total of 16 nations compete altogether. Eight taking part in matches for the Promotion Final and then also eight for the Super Final. A total of 32 matches will be played that will then determine who is the winner of the 20th edition of the Euro Beach Soccer League.
Massimo Agostini’s Azzurri side reach this point after previously finishing fourth during the most recent World Cup and then securing three wins during qualifying, eventually finishing sixth alongside Switzerland. During the first stage in Nazaré, Italy were initially beaten by Switzerland and hosts Portugal, before then overcoming France 1-0. The second stage played in Warnemunde at the end of August saw an improvement, with their only defeat coming against Ukraine, with Agostini’s side positively picking up two wins over Germany and Azerbaijan. They’ll now make their tournament debut against Ukraine tomorrow, before then facing Belarus on Friday and Russia on Saturday. All three matches will be played at 17:15.
FIGC President Carlo Tavecchio has sent a welcome message to all the teams competing: “For the second consecutive year, the closing event of the continental Beach Soccer competition will be held in our country, confirming the leading role that Italy has both on and off the field in this sport. After Catania, Terracina was chosen because it has strong links to both Beach Soccer and also beach sports in general. I also want to take the chance to wish the competition all the very best and I hope that the Azzurri can play a key role once again.”
Massimo Agostini is the man who’ll be hoping to lead Italy to success this September, with their only previous title coming all the way back in 2005: “The squad is focused, present and motivated,” said the coach. “Everyone has worked in the best possible manner and we all want to give everything we’ve got for this shirt. We have three strong and organised teams within our group. We’ve knowledge of them from previous encounters and we will try to do our best to succeed.”
Goalkeepers: Andrea Carpita (Viareggio 2014), Simone Del Mestre (Lumignacco), Stefano Spada (Castrocaro Calcio);
Defenders: Francesco Corosiniti (Sersale), Alessio Frainetti (Real Terracina), Dario Ramacciotti;
Wingers: Michele Di Palma, Simone Marinai, Pietro Angelo Palazzolo (Misterbianco), Roberto Mucciarelli (Hermada), Paolo Palmacci, Alessandro Remedi (Atletico Cenaia);
Forwards: Gabriele Gori (Castelnuovo Garf.), Emmanuele Zurlo (Bovalino C5).
Staff – Accompanying Director: Ferdinando Arcopinto; Technical staff: Massimo Agostini (Ct), Emiliano Del Duca, Antonino Nosdeo, Paolo Larocca; Secretary: Annamaria Giuliani; Medico: Alvise Clarioni; Physiotherapist: Enrico Matera.
The Superfinal groups
Group 1: Portugal, Spain, Switzerland and Poland
Group 2: Ukraine, Belarus, ITALY and Russia
Schedule for Group 2
Matchday One (14th September)
14.45 CEST: Russia-Belarus
Matchday Two (15th September)
Matchday Three (16th September)
Finals (17th September)