U16s book spot at FA futsal regionalsGo4Goal’s U14s and U16s futsal squads headed for Woking Leisure Centre last Saturday to begin the defence of our double UK national futsal crown in the Surrey FA futsal qualifying event for The FA Futsal Youth National Cup.
Both Go4Goal U14s and U16s won the national championships in 2017, but in order to repeat the feat this year, they would have to prove their worth once more against other clubs and schools at the Surrey FA futsal event, with a spot at the regional qualifiers at stake for the winner.
Near-flawless day for U14s
The U14s, a brand-new team assembled in the week prior to this event, were up first in the morning, with ten teams split into two groups to compete in a round robin format. The top two in each group then progress to the semi-finals, with the eventual winner then representing Surrey CFA at the regionals in May.
The squad breezed into the semi-finals, winning all four Group A matches scoring ten and conceding just once, where they met a Group B runners-up Claygate. A comfortable 4-0 victory saw them reach the final against Inspire Futsal, whom Go4Goal had beaten 2-1 in the final group match.
Inspire, knowing what we were capable of from our previous meeting, were set up to defend deep and play quickly on the break – a tactic which paid off as they took an early lead. Go4Goal pushed on but initially found it difficult to find the equaliser against a tough opponent. But the boys stuck to their guns and their persistence was paid off when the equaliser fell just two minutes from time.
With no extra time, the match went straight to penalties, where the road sadly ended for our boys following a 2-1 shootout defeat.
“The boys should be very proud of what they have achieved today in reaching the final unbeaten,” told Go4Goal head futsal coach Luis Meville after the event. “Some of the futsal on display was of the highest quality and, given that we had very little preparation time, losing on penalties is no reflection of how well they have done or played.”
Go4Goal 3-0 Banstead Village
Go4Goal 2-0 PDA Coaching
Go4Goal 3-0 Barnes Eagles
Go4Goal 2-1 Inspire Futsal
Semi-finalGo4Goal 4-0 Claygate
FinalGo4Goal 1-1 Inspire (Inspire win 2-1 on penalties)
Three-time county champs march on
Unlike the younger group, the U16s qualifier consisted of just six teams with the overall group winner progressing to the regional qualifier in May. Having won this event three times previously at U12s and twice at U14s level with this squad, Go4Goal were arguably the team to beat, despite being made up entirely of U15 players.
A tough start saw Go4Goal tie 1-1 with Chelsea FC Foundation in a high-intensity encounter, before the boys really hit their stride with a 5-0 victory over Futsal Fever. The third match promised to be a thriller, with Luis’ boys coming up against a Corinthian Casuals side that put seven past their first opponents.
Go4Goal raced to a 3-0 lead, before Casuals hit back with a goal of their own and assumed control of the affair, albeit briefly. A quick goal on the break saw our boys re-establish their three-goal cushion and hold on to all the points, with the game eventually ending 5-3.
The fourth game pitted us against Elstead Sharks, who were pointless after their first three matches. With nothing to lose, the Sharks flew out of the blocks and took a shock, catching Go4Goal 2v1 on a counter-attack. Despite a barrage of attacks, the Sharks goalkeeper put on a defiant performance to keep out the reigning champions with a series of stunning saves and blocks. The equaliser finally fell just four minutes from time and eventual winner soon followed, meaning Go4Goal needed just a point to advance to the next round.
There were no nerves this time, however, as Go4Goal saved their best performance to last, thrashing King Edwards School 5-0 win with a dominant performance from start to finish.
“That was a remarkable performance for an U15s group playing in an Under 16s competition,” praised Luis Melville after the event. “The boys should be proud of themselves for playing the way they did over five matches. Their team spirit and trust in each other was amazing to see. We’re already looking forward to seeing what challenges await in the next round.”
Go4Goal 1-1 Chelsea FC Foundation
Go4Goal 5-0 Futsal Fever
Go4Goal 5-3 Corinthian Casuals
Go4Goal 2-1 Elstead Sharks
Go4Goal 5-0 King Edward’s School
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