The Chilean national beach soccer team won a historic championship at the Beach Soccer Latin Cup, which was held in the city of Goias, Brazil, after winning its final game against Argentina, a victory that allowed it to be crowned champion.
In addition to the victory against Argentina, to win the cup Chile needed Brazil to defeat Uruguay. The locals fulfilled their task and beat Uruguay, meaning that Chile’s 6-5 victory over Argentina was enough to make the beach soccer team the best of the event.
Under the leadership of its captain Jorge Torres, the Chilean team did not get desperate at any time, despite the complexity of the game, during which Argentina was in the lead for the majority of regulation time. However, a few minutes before the end and after a great comeback, José Ignacio Mena scored the final 6-5 in favor of Chile.
After the game, Chile’s coach Roberto Álamos highlighted the virtues that allowed his team to shine on the Brazilian beaches. “The players’ tremendous potential, in addition to their attitude and tenacity. Now we need to plan what is coming, because we cannot waste our raw material. If we continue to work with consistency, then this team can manage even more important achievements,” he said.
In addition to the historic trophy is the great victory against Brazil, the specialty’s best team in the world. The beach “Reds” (as the Chilean national soccer team is popularly known) obtained what no other American team had managed, defeating the Brazilians, a team that had been undefeated at home since 2005 and had only suffered three defeats in the last 103 games that it played.
In addition to the title, the Chilean players are returning home with the championship’s most valuable player, a distinction awarded to Rodrigo Sanhueza, in addition to the best player and best new player, awards that went to the goalkeeper Gonzalo Mall, who made spectacular saves on the warm Goias sands.
The Beach Soccer Latin Cup has been held 11 times. Brazil was crowned champion on nine occasions, while Portugal and Chile have won it once each. In addition to the victory in Brazil, this extends the country’s list of sporting achievements.
It should be noted that soccer is the most popular sport in the country and that Chile has earned international respect in recent years. Last year the “Reds” clinched a berth in the South Africa 2010 World Cup after a great qualifying round in which they finished second.