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Rub of the green goes against the UAE

James Jose/Dubai
Filed on November 5, 2019
Action from the Intercontinental Beach Soccer match between the UAE and Spain on Tuesday. - Supplied photo

The Whites held sway over the Spaniards in a low-scoring Group A affair, but the rub of green didn't go their way when it came to penalties.

Hosts UAE have it all to do against Italy after suffering a painful defeat to Spain on the opening day of the Intercontinental Beach Soccer Cup on Tuesday.

The Whites held sway over the Spaniards in a low-scoring Group A affair, but the rub of green didn't go their way when it came to penalties.

After regulation time and extra time had ended in a 2-2 stalemate, La Roja prevailed 2-1 on penalties at the specially set up pitch at the Kite Beach.

Spanish goalkeeper Pablo Lopez Molina proved to be the hero, making twin saves to block Hesham Muntaser and Waleed Beshr's spot kicks.

Spain's Salvador Manuel Ardil had missed his penalty, while Muntaser saw his shot blocked.

Eduard Suarez Molina and Abbas Ali scored for Spain and the UAE respectively to make it 1-1.

Llorenc Gomez Leon was on target with his shot but Waleed Beshr saw his spot kick fended off by Molina as La Roja earned a point.

The UAE, who finished third in the competition in 2012 and 2013, take on Italy in their second Group A fixture on Wednesday, while the Spaniards meet Japan.

UAE coach Mohamed Abbas Al Maazmi said it was disappointing to lose a game that they had a hold on but added such is the nature of the game.

"We played a good game against a strong team and when it went to the penalty shootout it could have gone either way. And tonight (Tuesday), it didn't go our way," said Mohamed Abbas Al Maazmi.

"It's a bit disappointing when you lose on penalties but that's how the nature of Beach Soccer is. We now need to put this behind and focus on the next game against Italy," he added.

Looking ahead, Al Maazmi expected a tight tussle against the Italians. "There are no clear favourites in Beach Soccer," Al Maazmi said.

"We expect Italy to come very hard at us but we are ready for them and ready for the remainder of this competition. Our objective, as always, is to win every game we play. Tonight (Tuesday) we were a bit unlucky but tomorrow (Wednesday) is another day and a new start. Hopefully, we can get our campaign back on track," added the Emirati.

Italy had gone down to Japan 6-4 in the opener, while Russia beat Egypt 5-3 in Group B.

james@khaleejtimes.com

RESULTS/FIXTURES

Group A:

Japan 6 Italy 4

Spain 2 UAE 1

Iran 7 Mexico 4

Group B

Russia             5             Egypt            3

WEDNESDAY:

Group A

Japan vs Spain             4.15pm

UAE vs Italy             5.30pm

Group B

Russia v Mexico             6.45pm

Iran v Egypt             8pm


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