Tuesday, 13 September 2016 7:45 AM
Futsal Has High Hopes for Opening Match
The Solomon Islands futsal team believes their opening match against Costa Rica is their best chance of victory at the World Cup in Colombia.
The Kurukuru take on the 19th ranked CONCACAF champions on Monday local time at the Coliseo Bicentenario in Bucaramanga.
This will be the Solomon Islands' third appearance at the Futsal World Cup.
Four years ago they recorded their first ever World Cup victory against Guatemala.
The team spent the past three weeks playing club and international matches in Brazil and coach Juliano Schmeling said that will help them against Costa Rica.
"The first game always is tough and to play against the champions from CONCACAF will be a big challenge. Then the second match against Argentina - probably the second best team here in South America...they have only one player from Argentina because the rest of the team every single is playing in Europe, in professional clubs, so we know the challenge will be very high," he said.
"And the third against Kazakhstan: we know they have three Brazilian players, their manager is Brazilian - they have a project working together for the last three years and they did very well in UEFA competition so we know it will be a big challenge as well.
"For us it's three finals - we want to go to the World Cup and represent Solomon very well, represent OFC very well but definitely we will be ready for the three challenges for us in the World Cup.
"I think when you go the competition definitely we want to win, definitely we are expected to have three points. We know the reality of Argentina, Kazakhstan - we know the challenge will be much higher than Costa Rica - so I think we have a chance in the first game against Costa Rica, probably a chance to maybe have three points," he said.