Over the last two years, Goa has gone crazy over Zico, the Brazilian star of yesteryear who has guided the FC Goa franchise from the sidelines with great success. It still feels like yesterday, when the ISL title was in touching distance, before it was painfully snatched from our grasp in the dying minutes. Now finally some news to put a smile back on your face.
Ronaldinho coming to Goa
While Zico was more than enough to get Goan’s excited, the recent announcement that yet another Brazilian legend, Ronaldinho will represent the Goa franchise in the Premier Futsal competition, has taken the word EXCITED to an entirely new level.
To get you in the mood, check out this short video of Ronaldinho playing Futsal:
The Premier Futsal tournament is being promoted by former Portuguese football wing wizard, Figo and Indian Cricket Captain Virat Kohli, so it is bound to be a star-studded occasion. Apart from Ronaldinho, there will also be a marquee player present in each team.
- Paul Scholes (Bengaluru 5’s)
- Alessandro Rosa Viera -a.k.a Falcao (Chennai 5’s)
- Ronaldinho Gaucho (Goa 5’s)
- Michel Salgado (Kochi 5’s)
- Hernan Crespo (Kolkata 5’s)
- Ryan Giggs (Mumbai 5’s)
Futsal is a five-a-side version of football played on a small court, similar to a basketball court. The game is said to have originated in Uruguay. It is popular in South America and also over the last two decades it has gained global popularity. Fifa conducts a World Championship for the event.
Futsal is seen as beneficial to the development of footballers during their formative years, as the ball is small and less bouncy which promotes more skill. Furthermore, the smaller area creates faster decision making and more touches on the ball.
It is mainly played indoors, which would make it fantastic for a country like India which has extreme rain and sun at different times of the year. Another advantage is that it is easier to form a team of 5 friends to play, rather than find 11 needed for association football.
Finals in Mapusa
Very recently ItsGoa wrote an article about Goa having the potential to become a football tourism destination. We now hear that the organizers of Premier Futsal have just announced that the semi-finals and finals will be played at the Peddem Sports Complex, in Mapusa, which is just a stone throw away from the Gfa’s very own Duler Stadium. If Ronaldinho can inspire Goa to reach the final, it will surely be the icing on the cake to lift the coveted prize in Goa.
The tournament will kick off on 15th July and the finals will be held on 24th July. The following are the fixtures:
What are you waiting for? It’s time to get the vuvuzelas out of the cupboard and dust the cobwebs off. Come on Goa, It’s time to Samba!
Image Courtesy: Footiecentral.com