Semi-final matchups set at Intercontinental Cup

Ireland will play Ukraine and Russia will take on Brazil for a spot in the finals of this year’s biggest football 7-a-side tournament. 06 Aug 2013
Ireland football 7-a-side team

Ireland and Russia have both advanced to the semi-final round at the 2013 CPISRA Intercontinental Cup in Barcelona, Spain.

ⒸParalympics Ireland
By Tom Bestwick | For the IPC

The championship game will be played on Saturday (10 August) at 19:30.

Ireland, Russia, Brazil and Ukraine have all advanced to the semi-final round at the 2013 CPISRA Intercontinental Cup, which is taking place in Barcelona, Spain and serves as the qualification for next year’s football 7-a-side World Championships.

Ireland will now face Ukraine on Wednesday (7 August) at 19:30, while at the same time Russia will go up against Brazil for the other spot in the final. The championship game will be played on Saturday (10 August) at 19:30.

In the quarter-finals this week, on Sunday (4 August), Ireland beat the Netherlands 3-2 and Russia took down Scotland by a score of 5-0. Then on Monday (3 August), Brazil easily defeated the USA, 6-0, and Ukraine dominated Argentina, 7-1.

Group stages

The group stages came to a close last Friday (2 August) without any providing any real shocks heading into the playoffs.

The four teams that finished at the top of their respective groups won all three of their games over the course of the week. The Netherlands, Paralympic champions Russia, Ukraine and Brazil all topped their groups.

Making up the quarter-final games, Scotland, Ireland, USA and Argentina all finished with six points, with their only defeats coming against the nations that finished top of the groups. This, though, meant that Lyndon Lynch’s British team finished third and consequently missed out on a place in the final eight as well as a qualification place for the 2015 World Championships.

After a narrow 2-1 victory over Scotland, which finished second in Group A, the Netherlands comfortably beat Canada and host nation, Spain, 8-0 and 5-0, respectively.

Canada finished third with one victory over the course of the week after defeating Spain 6-1 in the opening game and Drew Ferguson’s team battled hard against Scotland but lost 5-2 with Trevor Stiles scoring both goals for the Canadians.

Russia, made light work of Group B after high scoring victories against Ireland (6-0) and Great Britain (8-0) before they finished their group with a 5-1 victory over a growing Venezuela team.

After beating Venezuela in their opening game and losing to Russia in the second, Great Britain’s hopes of progressing in the tournament hung on a knife edge going into their game against Ireland. Two goals from Jack Rutter was not enough for Great Britain, though, as Ireland battled back to win 3-2. A result that meant Ireland progressed and Great Britain finished third.

Ukraine scored 17 goals across their three games against the USA, Australia and Portugal to progress through to the final eight, whilst the USA, which came from behind to beat Portugal 3-2 in the second game, held their nerve to beat Australia in their final game to progress with Ukraine.

South American rivals Brazil and Argentina excelled in Group D, with Brazil scoring 26 goals and conceded none in their three games including winning 7-0 when they went head-to-head with Argentina in the first game of the of the Group.

Despite that opening defeat, Argentina went on to beat Northern Ireland 3-0 and Japan 13-0 to secure their place in the quarter-finals. Japan finished bottom of their group after they failed to win any of their matches after also losing to Northern Ireland 7-0 on the opening day.