The 5-3 win for Brazil over Morocco began exciting with excellent defending, but after a number of botched chances for both teams, the offenses began to flourish. The 5th play-off game saw a little bit of everything over all three periods. The two teams opened up their attacks and Brazil used big first and second periods to jump to a big lead. Morocco was unable to overcome the strength and teamwork utilized by Brazil though they impressed with some spectacular shots and gameplay of their own, despite some unlucky bounces.
Brazil and UAE both had disappointing and excruciatingly close losses in the opening matches of the matches of the tournament but in the opening minutes of the first period, the two squads showed no signs of a letdown. Brazil used sound defense to force Moroccan turnovers but they did not score off those plays. Morocco had just as many chances as well but Brazil was able to safely stop every shot. Going into the final third of the period, the goalies had done more than was expected of them as they kept the score tied at 0. The gameplay was end to end and the first goal came at Morocco’s expense as Mauricinho was given some open space and made sure he did not miss. The first goal opened the field up for Brazil and they added another goal late in the period, which put his side up by two goals. The period ended with a score of Brazil 2-0 Morocco.
The excitement and pace in the opening minutes of the second period was relentless and Morocco saw more opportunites to score were not able to get the goals they needed. The missed chances for The Lions of the Atlas led to transition goals for the verdeamarela, as they capitalized on their chances and added two more quick goals early in the period. The quick goal brought the Moroccan defense together as they noticeably began shutting down the Brazilian offense and limited the chances on goal. The second period whistle blew and Negão’s side found themselves up 4-0.
An amazing strike direct from the kick-off by Brazil jumpstarted the action in the final period, and a wonderful save from Morocco set the stage for a very competitive final frame. Brazil used a new keeper, Wesley, who made his first start and saw his first playing time in the tournament. Wesley had an excellent debut but suffered a knee injury early in the third period. The depth of Brazil was never in question, though, as they brought in Cesinha, their regular keeper for this tournament. Morocco took quick advantage of the Seleçao’s change goal, though, scoring two goals in two minutes, the last one coming off a great cross and finished with a magnificent low and diving header from El Hamidy. The two goals gave Morocco newfound life and they were only down by two hits at that point. Brazil added one more very late goal to insure their victory and the final frame ended with the Tetracampeão winning 5-3 but not before Morocco added a direct kick goal with one second left.
Brazil will now face the winner Italy in a match to determine fifth and sixth place finishers on the final day of the tournament, Saturday. They earned that chance with the 5-3 victory over Morocco. It will be an opportunity for the Canarinha to finish the tournament strong with two straight wins. The loss for Morocco leaves them winless in the tournament but they will have the chance to play for seventh place on Saturday, against Mexico.
Goals: 1-0: Mauricinho, min. 2 (1); 2-0: Datinha, min. 1 (1); 3-0: Mauricinho, min. 8 (2); 4-0: Sidney, min. 8 (2); 4-1: Boulakouaba, min. 7 (3); 4-2: El Hamidy, min. 5 (3); 5-2: Catarino, min. 0 (3); 5-3: El Hadaoui, min. 0 (3).
SAMSUNG BEACH SOCCER INTERCONTINENTAL CUP DUBAI 2013
16:45 – Brazil 5-3 Morocco (Play-off for 5th Place)
18:00 – Italy vs. Mexico (Play-off for 5th Place)
19:15 – Iran vs. UAE (Semi-final)
20:30 – Switzerland vs. Russia (Semi-final)
Games for tomorrow:
Saturday 23rd of November, 2013
16:45 – Loser of Brazil and Morocco vs. Loser of Italy and Mexico (7th Place Match)
18:00 – Winner of Brazil and Morocco vs. Winner of Italy and Mexico (5th Place Match)
19:15 – Loser of Iran and UAE vs. Loser of Switzerland and Russia (3rd Place Match)
20:30 – Winner of Iran and UAE vs. Winner of Switzerland and Russia (Final)