Preview: U.S. Beach National Team Begins Quest to Qualify for 2019 FIFA Beach Soccer World CupUSA Begins 2019 CONCACAF Beach Soccer Championship Monday, May 13 vs. Bonaire
CHICAGO (May 13, 2019) – The U.S. Beach National Team begins group play in the 2019 Concacaf Beach Soccer Championship on Monday, May 13 against Bonaire at the Visit Puerto Vallarta Stadium in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico (5:45 p.m. ET; Concacaf GO and UDN)
The top two teams from each of the four groups will advance to the knockout stage. The two finalists will play for the regional title and automatically qualify for the 2019 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup in Paraguay this November.
The USA will face Bonaire, Antigua and Barbuda and The Bahamas in Group C play:
- Mon., May 13 vs. Bonaire (5:45 p.m. ET)
- Wed, May 15 vs. Antigua and Barbuda (4:30 p.m. ET)
- Thur., May 16 vs. Bahamas (3:15 p.m. ET).
All matches will be streamed live via Concacaf GO and Univision Deportes Network.
Head Coach Eddie Soto named an experienced 12-player roster for the competition, including veterans Nick Perera, Chris Toth, Ryan Futagaki and Jason Leopoldo, who were all on the 2013 Concacaf Beach Championship winning side. They were joined by Alessandro Canale at the 2013 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup in Tahiti, where the quintet combined to score nine of the USA’s 12 goals.
U.S. Roster by Position:
GOALKEEPERS (2): 1-Chris Toth (Fallbrook, Calif.), 12-Juan Cervantes (Los Angeles, Calif.).
DEFENDERS (5): 4- Adriano Dos Santos (Baltimore, Md.), 6-Jason Santos (Cardiff by the Sea, Calif.), 8- Tanner Akol (Santa Cruz, Calif.), 10-Oscar Reyes (Santa Ana, Calif.), 11-David Mondragon (Santa Cruz, Calif.),
FORWARDS (5): 2-Jason Leopoldo (Scottsdale, Ariz.), 3-Ryan Futagaki (Huntington Beach, Calif.), 5- Alessandro Canale (Venice, Calif.), 7- Nick Perera (Carlsbad, Calif.), 9-Franck Tayou (Las Vegas, Nev.)
Read More: Beach National Team Roster Notes
the soto family: beach coach, u-20 mnt midfielder
The team is undefeated in this tournament’s group stage during his tenure (14-0 since 2009), has advanced to the semifinals four times, and won the 2013 title with a 5-4 overtime win over El Salvador in the championship match.
more roster notes:
Ryan Futagaki, 39, is making his sixth consecutive Concacaf Championship roster (2009, 2010, 2013, 2015, 2017 and 2019). He also previously represented the USA at the 1999 FIFA Youth World Championship (now called U-20 World Cup), where he scored against Japan.
Jason Leopoldo, Nick Perera (above) and Chris Toth are on their fourth Qualifying tournament roster (2013, 2015, 2017, 2019); Alessandro Canale and Jason Santos are on their third (2015, 2017, 2019); Juan Cervantes and Oscar Reyes also return from the 2017 team.
Four players are coming off the recently completed Major Arena League Soccer (MASL) season: Perera (player/coach, Tacoma Stars), Toth (Ontario Fury), Adriano Dos Santos (Baltimore Blast) and Franck Tayou (Monterrey Flash).
Perera and Tayou have won the last four MASL Most Valuable Player awards: Tayou for 2015-16, 2016-17 and 2017-18, and Perera for the recently completed 2018-19 season.
Tayou, who is making his Beach National Team debut, has led the MASL in goals in each of the past four regular seasons, totaling 47, 57, 71 and 50 in each, respectively.
Dos Santos was one of three finalists for the MASL Defender of the Year. Along with Perera, he was named First Team All-MASL.
Toth was the 2016-17 and 2017-18 MASL Goalkeeper of the Year and joined Tayou on those season’s First Team All-MASL honors.
Tanner Akol, David Mondragon, Dos Santos and Tayou are participating in their first Concacaf Championship.
GROUPS AND FORMAT:
Group A – Mexico, Costa Rica, Jamaica, Guatemala
Group B – Panama, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos, U.S. Virgin Islands
Group C – USA, Bonaire, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas
Group D – El Salvador, Guadaloupe, Belize, Guyana
The complete schedule can be found here.
The top two teams in each group after round robin play advance to the quarterfinals and will be matched up as follows:
A1 vs. B2; A2 vs. B1
C1 vs. D1; C2 vs. D1
The winners in each bullet above will meet in the semifinals, and the two finalists will square off in the title game and automatically qualify for the 2019 FIFA Beach World Cup in Paraguay.
THE USA’S GROUP OPPONENTS:
The Caribbean island of Bonaire is a relatively ‘new’ participant in the region, accepted by Concacaf’s XXVIII Ordinary congress as an Associate Member in April 2013. The island was formerly part of the Netherland Antilles, and in 2010 became a “special municipality” of the Netherlands, officially considered “public bodies” under Dutch law.
They recently fielded teams at the senior level in Concacaf Nations League Qualifying and in the first round of the Concacaf U-17 Championship. They are not a FIFA member nation, therefore not eligible to represent the region at the World Cup should they finish in the top two. The USA has never played Bonaire at any national team level.
Alsy Anthony, Henrich Beaumont, Raydolf Felix, Elionard Janga, Ruvelio Josephia, Ruviano Josephia, Clifford Martis, Gilbertson Piard, Edson Sint Jago, Giandro Steba, Andrew Wout, Cristian Zuniga.
Antigua and Barbuda:
The USA has faced Antigua and Barbuda in each of the last two Concacaf Beach Soccer Championship. In the 2015 group opener, the USA won 4-1 behind goals from Andrew Feld, Chris Toth, Nick Perera and Lewie Valentine. In 2017, the USA won 7-2 with two goals from Valentine and one each from Feld, Ryan Futagaki, Mathew Van Zytveld, Alessandro Canale as well as an own goal.
Samuel Watley, Desmond Bleau, Kevin Richards, Omarie Daniel, Elvis Thomas, Shakore Simon, Chevon Moore, O’Dell Murray, Stephen Hughes, Roy Yorks, Janiel Simon, Malique Jarvis.
This is the sixth straight Beach Soccer Championship in which the USA and Bahamas will square off, with the USA winning the previous five meetings:
June 17, 2009 in Puerto Vallarta: W 6-2; Anthony Chimienti (3), Brendan Taguinod, Yuri Morales (2)
Dec. 2, 2010 in Puerto Vallarta: W 6-3; Chimienti (2), Oscar Gil (2), Zak Ibsen, Yuri Morales
May 10, 2013 in Bahamas: W 9-2 W; Perera (3), Valentine, Taguinod (2), Chimienti (2), Eric Meister
March 31, 2015 in El Salvador: W 6-2; Valentine (3), Jason Leopoldo, Feld, Mike Griffin
Feb. 26, 2017 in Bahamas: W 4-2; Oscar Reyes, Canale, Perera, Toth
1-Michael Butler, 2-Timothy Munnings, 3-James Thompson, 4-Jean Francois, 5-Kyle Williams, 6-Gary Joseph, 7-Nesly Jean, 8-Dwayne Forbes, 9-Daron Beneby, 10-Lesly St. Fleur, 11-Gavin Christie, 12-Torin Ferguson
HISTORY OF BEACH CHAMPIONSHIP QUALIFYING:
The first official FIFA Beach World Cup was held in 2005 and was played every year from 2005-2009. Teams from Concacaf and CONMEBOL combined for an ‘America’s Championship’ to determine its four participants for the inaugural Beach World Cup.
Concacaf held its first stand-alone Beach Soccer Championship as its World Cup Qualifiers in 2006, before the two Confederations joined again in 2007. Since then Concacaf has held its own Championship, including in 2008 and 2009. The FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup switched from annual to a bi-annual event in 2011, with Concacaf holding respective Beach Championships in 2010 (for the 2011 World Cup), 2013, 2015, 2017 and this year.
CONCACAF ENTRIES AT THE FIFA BEACH SOCCER WORLD CUPS:
The U.S. has qualified for four of the nine FIFA Beach World Cups: 2005 Brazil, 2006 Brazil, 2007 Brazil and 2013 Tahiti.
2005: USA - Third place in Combined Championship (Concacaf/Conmebol)
2006: USA – Winner, Inaugural Concacaf Beach Soccer Championship
Canada – Runner up, Concacaf Beach Soccer Championship
2007: USA – Winner of Combine Championship (Concacaf/Conmebol)
Mexico – Top Four
2008: Mexico – Winner, Concacaf Beach Soccer Championship
El Salvador – Runner up
2009: El Salvador – Winner, Concacaf Beach Soccer Championship
Costa Rica – Runner up
2010: Mexico – Winner, Concacaf Beach Soccer Championship
El Salvador – Runner up
2013: USA – Winner, Concacaf Beach Soccer Championship
El Salvador – Runner up
2015: Mexico – Winner, Concacaf Beach Soccer Championship
Costa Rica – Runner up
2017: Panama – Winner, Concacaf Beach Soccer Championship
Mexico – Runner up
Bahamas – World Cup Host
ALL-TIME GOALS IN QUALIFYING:
The USA roster has scored a combined 53 goals over the past six Championships. Leading the attack is Nick Perera, whose 24 goals in three editions makes him the USA’s all-time leading scorer in World Cup Qualifying. Alessandro Canale is fifth all-time in Qualifying with 11, followed by Ryan Futagaki (7), Chris Toth (6), Oscar Reyes (3) and Jason Santos 2.
Assistant coach Francis Farberoff scored 10 total goals, and is the only USA player to score in seven different Concacaf Championships (2005-2013).
The USA’s top-five scorers in World Cup Qualifying:
24 - Nicolas Perera: 11 (2013), 9 (2015), 4 (2017)
21 - Yuri Morales: 5 (2006), 4 (2007), 2 (2008), 7 (2009), 3 (2010)
20 - Anthony Chimienti: 3 (2006), 2 (2007), 3 (2008), 3 (2009), 6 (2010), 3 (2013)
12- Brendon Taguinod: 1 (2006), 4 (2007), 2 (2008), 2 (2009), 3 (2013)
11 - Jevin Albuquerque: 6 (2007), 3 (2008), 2 (2010)
11 - Alessandro Canale: 2 (2015), 9 (2017)
five things to know about beach soccer
The concept is the same as the traditional game, but there are unique rules for the beach version. Without re-writing the Beach Laws of the Game, here are some basics:
1. The game is played on a sand ‘pitch’ measuring roughly 30x40 yards and goals around 18x7 feet, with four field players and a goalkeeper, who can – and often does – score.
2. There are three 12-minute periods (3 minute breaks in between), and no ties. If tied after 36 minutes, they’ll play a three-minute overtime period. If still tied, it’s best of three penalties, followed by sudden death. Points are as follows:
- 3 points for regulation win
- 2 points for overtime win
- 1 point for penalty kick win
3. Teams can dress all 12 players and make substitutions on the fly from the designated area.
4. Goalkeepers can only use their hands once per possession, which is why having a goalkeeper comfortable with their feet can be advantageous
5. There are yellow and red cards. If a player is shown red, his team will play a man down for two minutes (or until the opponent scores if within two minutes). Afterwards, the team may re-insert another player to return to level.
2019 WORLD CUP SPOTS FILLED:
Five-time World Cup champions Brazil and Uruguay became the latest teams to qualify for the 2019 FIFA World Cup in Paraguay when they finished first and second, respectively, in the South American qualifying tournament last month. They joined hosts Paraguay (host), African qualifiers Nigeria and Senegal, and Asian representatives Japan, Oman, and United Arab Emirates in the 16-nation field.
After Concacaf identifies its two qualifiers this week, Oceania’s lone berth will be known in June and Europe will round out the field by determining the final five entries from a tournament in July in Russia.