Sunday, August 31, 2008

USA Futsal:

N.Y. Ecuador with Coach Tony Toral Makes Strong Run in National Tourney

The N.Y. Ecuador Futsal Club had an impressive run at the USFF National Championships. A very young squad comprised of mostly 20 year olds ran through the group stage by defeating MACSA from California, Safira from Massachusetts and the eventual Champions Charm City from Maryland. (Photo: Standing: Coach Tony Toral, Javier Decima, Alberto Gavilanes, Richard Lesmes (Captain), Diego Mayanga, Edison Bayas, Juan Peralta, Mauricio Romero. Front row: Brian Almeida, Kleber Almeida, Cesar Valenzuela, Steven Amaya (Captain), Matias Velazquez, Alan Acevedo.)Although very young, players of this team has already represented the U.S. in International AMF Futsal competitions in Mexico, Catalonia and Canada. Thisexperience paid off after a year of ups and downs. Charm City, the Champion of the tournament, is made up of USFF Futsal National Team players with World Cup experience like Lee Tschantret, Brett Phillips, Don D'Ambra and included MISL players such as all league defender P.J. Wakefield, Giuliano Celenza and Robbie Aristodemo from the Baltimore Blast.
In Quarter Finals, N.Y. Ecuador defeated the Den of Lions Legends 6-0 and the match-up against perennial powerhouse, World United FC was set. World United had defeated the defending National Champions, Nacional from Utah 9-3. World United's lineup is scary on paper counting with U.S. National Futsal Team Captain and MISL MVP, Denison Cabral, Milwaukee Wave and All-Rookie Selection as well as former Malwee FC (Brazil) player Marcio Leite, Deco also from the Milwaukee Wave, Lucio from the Baltimore Blast, Hewerton Detroit Ignition and Goalkeeper, Senaldo among others.
The game was very tactical and little gaps were given by both sides. It wasn't until the 12th minute that World United opened the score after a lapse of concentration from a defender who had just come on to replace team Captain, Richard Lesmes. World United was quickly up 2-0 and then it seemed that N.Y. Ecuador woke up and started to break down United. In the following minutes N.Y. Ecuador was able to constantly break down the United defense and through speed and skill found gaps to take shot after shot on goal only to be turned away by a spectacular Senaldo.
In the second half, United went up 4-0 after N.Y. Ecuador was all attack trying to come up with the goal they deserved. watching the game would not have guessed that United was on top or at least that they deserved to be.
In the last 10 minutes N.Y. Ecuador pulled within 2 with goals from Juan Peralta and Alan Acevedo and after pulling the Goalkeeper for the fifth attacker, Cesar Valenzuela the game became a show that World United did not want to be a part of. Time after time the lineup made up of Valenzuela, Mayanga, Lesmes, Peralta, and Acevedo did whatever they wanted with the United players. It was a demonstration of the sheer ability one develops playing futsal.
In the first goal scored by Peralta, he cut U.S. National Team Captain, Cabral inside and out and then left him behind with a sudden burst of speed. If Senaldo would not have been inspired the score would have and should have been in favor N.Y. Ecuador. Yet little can be taken away from the experience and tactics demonstrated by World United - it was this experience and their desire to stop playing and just kick the ball three courts down that cut the momentum of the game. So much was taken out of World United that the Final was a monologue which led to an easy victory from Charm City FC.
Most N.Y. Ecuador players have made a name for themselves in futsal and indoor soccer circles and hopefully someone that can give them a shot at maybe a National Team trial was watching. After all it is safe to say that they were the most skillful players 1v1 in the entire tournament. N.Y. Ecuador players grew up playing futsal and only play futsal which is why they have such skill on the ball.