Brazil vs Spain: The Epic Final Preview

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BANGKOK – Futsal Canada will be bringing you live second to second updates in the arena via Twitter @insidesoccermag during the FIFA Futsal World Cup Final when Brazil face Spain for the fourth time to crown the best futsal nation on the planet. Here is the preview for the epic showdown between the two best teams on earth.

(Courtesy of FIFA.com)

(Photo courtesy of FIFA.com/Foto-net)

After 17 days of futsal action and 50 matches, the final of the FIFA Futsal World Cup Thailand 2012 will be contested this Sunday, when Spain and title-holders Brazil battle it out for futsal’s ultimate prize. However, before the finalists can take to the pitch, Italy and Colombia will face off to decide who will walk away with third place. Gli Azzurri will be aiming for a second bronze in a row, while for tournament newcomers Colombia, every victory represents another little bit of history.

The final
Spain- Brazil, Bangkok, Indoor Stadium Huamark, 18 November 2012, 19:30 (local time)

The final promises to be a feast for futsal lovers everywhere, with two of the best teams in the world bringing star-studded line-ups to this heavyweight clash. Brazil make their sixth appearance at a FIFA Futsal World Cup final and will be hoping to add to the four titles they already hold, while opponents Spain, who are the only other side to have won a FIFA Futsal World Cup, will be contesting their fifth final.

Spain’s journey through the tournament has been largely untroubled. After topping Group B, ahead of Iran, Panama and Morocco, they knocked out tournament hosts Thailand in the Round of 16 and overcame a dangerous Russia in the quarter-finals. A semi-final victory over Italy completed their run to the decider.

Brazil started out in Group C alongside Portugal, Japan and Libya and moved comfortably past Round of 16 opponents Panama. Their toughest test came against Argentina in the quarter-finals, when they needed extra time to complete a dramatic comeback. A Seleção then dispatched semi-final opponents Colombia to keep their title hopes on track.

Player to watch
A player well worth keeping an eye on is Brazil’s Fernandinho, whose seven goals put him second on the list of top scorers. Moreover, he has an equal number of assists to him name, underlining the threat he poses. Spanish goalkeeper Juanjo will need to be at his best to deny the prolific No10.

The stat
4 – The final of Thailand 2012 will be the fourth time Brazil and Spain have competed for the title of futsal world champions. Their first was at Spain 1996, when Brazil defeated the tournament hosts, only for the Spaniards to exact their revenge four years later in Guatemala. The final of Brazil 2008 was the closest fought to date, with the South Americans winning on penalties.

The words
“The game against Brazil is a repeat of the last final. We know we’re a good team but we also know our limits. It’s going to be very close,” Spain goalkeeper Juanjo.

The Odds (Courtesy of Kris Fernandes via Goal.com)
For those up early on Sunday and looking for a different twist for their footy fix, go online and find a livestream for the 2012 FIFA Futsal World Cup Final that kicksoff at 7:30am EST. You will be blown away by the action and as always you can bet live in-play as the game unfolds at Uwin.com.

Futsal is a 5 a side game that is played on a 40 x 20 hard court. It features a low-bounce ball that allows players to truly showcases some amazing skills and a goal can be scored in the blink of an eye. There are also on the fly substitutions which leads to a relentless pace. A futsal match lasts 40 minutes (2 halves of 20 minutes) with a stop clock and, like basketball, utilizes an accumulated foul system in which if a team concedes a 6th or subsequent foul, they are penalized with essentially a penalty shot from 10m out.

This is the sport that Messi, Ronaldo, and Pele all greatly attribute as vital to who they became. The sport is simply amazing to watch, and really a lot of fun to bet on too.

The defending champions Brazil, have won the world championship six times (four under FIFA’s rule) and have played Spain in three previous Futsal World Cup title matches, including the last one that they hosted in 2008 when they edged out Spain in penalties after a 2-2 score during regular play.

They are undefeated in the competition thus far having won their group by beating Japan, Libya, and Portugal before destroying Panama, edging out Argentina, and finishing Colombia in their knockout stage matches.

Their style of play is very skillful and loose with explosive offensive weapons that would make the US military jealous. The world’s most famous player Falcão will be playing in his last World Cup match and will want to go out as a winner. He has been the tournament MVP for the last two editions and though he was out injured for over a week in this competition, he was able to comeback and lead the squad to a win over Argentina with a pair of goals to send the samba boys through.

A Brazil win is listed at 1.99 right now at Uwin.com.

Spain believe they can beat Brazil and why not? They defeated the Brazilians for both of their World Cup titles back in 2000 and 2004 and if it wasn’t for penalties in 2008 it would have been a third straight victory. They are an exceptionally athletic team that is very cohesive and follows a strict and highly effective disciplined plan from Coach Venacio Lopez, who is regarded as one of the best minds in the sport.

It is also the last World Cup game for futsal demi-god Kike (pronounced Kee-kay) as the captain and soul of the team led the Spaniards to two previous titles and also through Iran, Panama, Morocco in the group stages before disposing of hosts Thailand, a brutally tough Russian team, and a dominating 4-1 win over Italy in the semis.

A Spanish win here is going for 2.72 in regulation time, which is a bit surprising given just how good this side have looked.

If at the end of 40 minutes there is no winner then bookies will consider it a draw which is what happened last time they played at this exact stage. The payout for a repeat is at 4.55 which is something I would definitely consider.

The over/under sees 4.5 as the mark with the odds for over at 1.73 and the under at 1.99. It’s a tough one but if it goes to extra time I do like the over. In their prior three meetings in the final they combined for 10, 7, and 4.

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