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Beach Soccer: Pro, and now, FIFA World Cup


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NOW, FIFA muscling into Beach footie as well, smells some money, and Blatter can now make some more statements about Women's kitz. SpongeBob Blatter is moving in next door to the Pineapple at Bikini Bottom!


Fun gets real as FIFA launches Beach Soccer World Cup

ZURICH, Feb 1 (Reuters) - Beach soccer, the sport that taught generations of Brazilians how to play the beautiful game, is getting serious. FIFA, world soccer's governing body, announced on Tuesday it was launching the first World Beach Soccer Cup, involving 12 teams, under its own auspices in Brazil later this year.

The five-a-side sport had been run mainly by the Spanish-based group Beach Soccer World Wide with FIFA's endorsement, but without its direct involvement. It held annual world championships from 1995 to 2004.

"Beach soccer is an immensely attractive and exciting variation of association football," FIFA president Sepp Blatter said in a statement.

"Since being introduced just over a decade ago, the sport has grown steadily in terms of popularity and sophistication."

Brazil's Romario and Frenchman Eric Cantona play beach soccer regularly.

The spectacular game, where the ball is in the air much of the time, involves three periods of 12 minutes each. It allows unlimited substitutions and has a two-minute sin bin.



Who do you see as our starting line-up at this year's BeachWC Qualifiers, Ed? Can Corrazin fit into the kit?

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FIFA launches first ever FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup

Zurich, 1 February 2005 - As part of its efforts to promote and develop football, in all its forms, throughout the world, FIFA is delighted to announce another innovation in its competition portfolio: the launch of the first ever FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup. FIFA is convinced that Beach Soccer is and will increasingly become an important and attractive part of the sport of football. Therefore, world football's governing body has decided to create FIFA Beach Soccer S.L. (FBSSL), a new subsidiary with offices in Barcelona, exclusively dedicated to organising the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup annually, as of 2005, and to developing the game on a worldwide level. Henceforth, FIFA will act as the governing body of Beach Soccer.

Although the format of the event is currently being finalised and may be subject to amendment, it is anticipated that the inaugural FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup will take place in Brazil in 2005. Twelve countries, from across FIFA's confederation zones, will take part.

Previously, the sport of Beach Soccer, including the Beach Soccer World Championships held annually between 1995 and 2004, was run principally by the Spanish-based group Beach Soccer World Wide (BSWW), with FIFA's endorsement but without its direct involvement. Henceforth, FIFA will leverage the talents of the key staff of BSWW - comprising some of the most experienced individuals in the field - in organising the new FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup. In this way, the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup will, with immediate effect, become the undisputed premier event of the Beach Soccer calendar.

"Beach Soccer is an immensely attractive and exciting variation of association football. Since being introduced just over a decade ago, the sport has grown steadily in terms of popularity and sophistication," remarked FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter. "It is therefore absolutely logical for FIFA, the governing body of football, to extend its reach into Beach Soccer and we look forward to bringing all of the knowledge and expertise that FIFA has to improving Beach Soccer, whilst being careful to preserve the sense of spontaneity and fun that are essential to the sport."

"We are delighted with this announcement," said Luis Felipe Tavares, President of BSWW. "We have worked hard for many years to build up the reputation and quality of Beach Soccer. Now, by joining forces with FIFA to create the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup, we are ensuring that we are pushing the sport to the next level in terms of quality, recognition and prominence." FIFA will release further details in the months ahead.

Further information from:

FIFA Media Department

Telephone: +41-43/222 7272 - Telefax: +41-43/222 7373 - E-mail: media@fifa.org

FIFA Communications Department / Zurich, 1 February 2005 / 2005-14-BeachSoccerWC-E.doc

Enquiries to be addresse to:

FIFA Media Office

Tel: +41-43/222 72 72

Fax: +41-43/222 73 73

FIFA Communications Division

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Ongaro Named Coach of Canada's National Beach Soccer Team

(Edmonton Sun)

Cullen Smartwell

February 1, 2005

Following his brilliant near successes at coaching Canada's Indoor Futbol squad at the FIFA qualifiers at Panama last year and his second place finish in the Voyageur's Cup with the A-League Edmonton Aviators/FC (defunct, but we-told-you-so), the CSA moved quickly to name Edmonton's Ross Ongaro as coach of the newly minted Canadian National Men's Beach Soccer Team, effective immediately.

Hot news.

"It is indeed a great honour to be named as Canada's first coach in this growing sport, and shows that Edmonton continues to be at the forefront of soccer development in Canada," enthused an enthusiastic Ongaro as your devoted correspondent caught up to him at his Anthem Sports Wear shop at the seedy east-end Clareview Industrial Area of our City of Champions while pressing CSA ensignia on the bootlegged Adidas Kit he had picked up at Army and Navy earlier in the day. "It is also a...ouch that's hot...vindication for what we have been trying to accomplish here in Edmonton."

"Kevan Pipe has assured me that with the failure of the Men's National team in World Cup qualifying and the Women in Olympic qualifying last year in traditional soccer, there is now plenty of money freed up to ensure adequate preparation. I have already booked the beach at the West Edmonton Mall Indoor Water Park for the early morning hours for the next month, and have arranged one-day try-outs this April in Montreal and Toronto to ensure that we try to get a representative team from across our great nation."

Asked about friendlies, Coach Ongaro was quick to respond. "We will easily have more home friendlies this year than Frank Yallop's squad. I have already discussed with the Canadian Beach Volleyball Association about fitting us in as entertainment between their matches at their showcase events in Cavendish, Lake Memphremagog, Coburg, Crystal Beach, Winipeg Beach, Sylan Lake and White Rock."

"I have also been asked about setting up a provisional Woman's team, as soon as my clearance certificate comes in from the RCMP", said an excited Ongaro, as he waved a quivering hand towards Anthem's racks of women's summer wear.

Asked about what kind of tactics and formation he plans to employ, Coach Ross drew in a breath, and pronounced: " A variation of my A-League tactics of a defensive strategy that is designed to confuse the other side without confusing our own guys too much. We will of course have far-ranging wingers who will occaisonally rocket up from the back in an effort to draw their defenders away form the clogged middle where we will attempt to pin-ball in on goal. Urgent calls have gone out to some players I know now on extended holiday in Chile."

The Edmonton Sun and the CSA have come to a marketing agreement whereby the Sun will promote the team in the Edmonton area in response to your Sun having the exclusive rights to have the players of both the Men's and Woman's teams pose for our page 5 (Women) and page S-23 (Men) spreads.


I don't know about you, but this correspondent may now start to show some interest in Canadian soccer, and stop only writing about just British and European soccer.

And, that's a good thing folks!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Life's a beach for Romario after international recall

RIO DE JANEIRO, Feb 17 (Reuters) - Former World Cup striker Romario was called up by Brazil again on Thursday -- for a beach soccer tournament.

The 39-year-old, who is still playing for Vasco da Gama, was included in the squad for a Beach Soccer World Cup qualifying tournament in Rio de Janeiro next month.

"On the pitch, he's a player like few others and he worries the opponents. Off the pitch, he's got a big name, he attracts the supporters," said Brazil coach Jorge Ferreira Alves.

It was not immediately clear how Romario would fit in the tournament with his club commitments.

Romario has scored two goals for Vasco since rejoining them in January and is expected to end his career at the end of the Carioca championship in April.

He was excused for Wednesday's Copa Brasil tie away to Uniao Rondonopolis to spare him the 11-hour plane and bus journey.

Romario last played for Brazil in a World Cup qualifier away to Uruguay in 2001.


Question: if Brazil is hosting this years "FIFA World Cup of Beach Soccer", why are they in a qualifying tournament for it. To add more spice and commerical draw to the tournament.

Also has anyone heard if Canada is REALLY going to put a team together for this, or are they going to save some money fr the real fotie? Anypone heard anything at all about how teams are going to qualify?

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Yes, Canada (and it would have to be CSA) IS fielding a team:


First World Cup qualifying dates announced |16/02/2005|

Eight national teams from North and South America will begin their quest to take part in the first ever FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup with the first round of qualifying games in Rio de Janeiro, starting on the 1st March.

Whilst Brazil are automatically qualified as hosts, they will make up one of two groups which will determine three more teams to join them in the inaugural competition, to be held in Brazil in May.

Canada, U.S.A and Mexico join the host nation in Group A, whilst Argentina, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela will battle it out in Group B.

Each nation will play all of the teams in their group, with the top two from each group going through to the semi-finals. Should Brazil not make it to the semi-finals, the two finalists would automatically qualify, whilst the losing teams would face a play-off for the third available slot.





Has anyone heard any Canadian plans? Have we even played a Canadian side in any competition?

edit: according to a story linked form BC Soccer Web, now no longer available on Canada,com, the World Cup is planned for Brazil in May.

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Well, a quick search reveals that Canada has played at elast a women's match in beach soccer ( I don't know about men's) so we should at least be able to hit the sand running whe FIFA decides to move into the women's side .





Canada wins the first ever international women’s beach soccer game

Canada’s women’s national beach soccer team made history when it won the first ever international game of the sport against the United States during the North American Sand Soccer Championship held last June 6-8.

The Canadian formation was in Virginia Beach for this first experience. A friendly game was first played on Friday evening against the Americans, match that ended in a 7-7 tie.

Afterwards, a two-game series was planned in order to determine the competition’s champion. On Saturday, in the first ever international women’s game in the history of beach soccer, Canada came out on top, winning 6-4. The next day, the Canadian squad did not perform as well and lost 5-1. In order to determine the winner, a penalty shootout was needed. At the end, Canada was unlucky, losing after the seventh penalty kick, which allowed the American to win the gold medal.

Still, it was a great experience for both teams. The Canadian squad, coached by Christian Prévost and Sébastien Gauthier, was in large part composed of first class Quebec player: Marie-Pier Bilodeau, Lisa Rinaldi, Geneviève Tremblay, Lise Backman, Mélissa Lesage, Chantal Golding, Catherine Duchesne, Joëlle Ethier, Sarah Walsh and Jen Parsons.

A more detailed article will be published in the July edition of the Québec Soccer newspaper (available July 2).

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