GRAN CANARIA, Spain (July 23, 2022) – The U.S. Men’s Beach Soccer National Team shutout 2021 FIFA World Cup runner Japan 2-0 Saturday afternoon to temporarily move atop the Mundialito Gran Canaria 2022 standings on the final match day. However Spain defeated Portugal 7-5 in the late game to draw even with the U.S. on six points and claim the tournament title by winning the head-to-head tie-breaker. The USA’s second place finish was its best at Mundialito since winning the tournament in 1998.
Gabriel Silveira scored his team-high fourth goal of the tournament - and in his third straight game - and Chris Albiston added second, while goalkeeper Chris Toth posted the tournament’s first clean sheet since 2017. Toth was named the tournament’s Best Goalkeeper, an honor he also took home at Mundialito 2016.
The U.S. kept the same five-player opening shift as had started against Portugal, and the group looked in sync from the opening whistle. Albiston ripped a shot off the crossbar seconds into the match, and Toth again worked both ends of the field, with one blast bouncing off the corner of the goal. Silveira stayed hot and put the U.S. ahead when he picked up a loose ball and fired a powerful shot from 18 yard past Japanese goalkeeper Yusuke Kawai.
U.S. defense was also locked in, prevented tournament leading scorer Takuya Akaguma from threatening for much of the opening two periods. With a lead into the second, Toth denied Ozu and Akaguma on back-to-back plays, and Silveira nearly doubled the lead when his clearance from distance hit the crossbar.
Toth again kept the U.S. ahead early in the third with fantastic saves of Gaiya Saito from close range and a powerful bike from Akaguma. With less than five minutes left, Albiston stripped a ball near the sideline and advanced forward, ripping a shot from a tight angle into the roof of the goal to provide some breathing room. Toth would close out the game with a tip-save over the crossbar off Takaaki Oba’s bike and stoping Akaguma’s free kick from 12 yards out.
-U.S. BEACH MEN’S NATIONAL TEAM MATCH REPORT-
Match: United States Men’s Beach Soccer National Team vs. Japan
Date: July 22, 2022
Competition: Mundialito Gran Canaria 2022
Venue: Maspalomas Gran Canaria Stadium; San Bartolome de Tirajana, Gran Canaria, Spain
Kickoff: 11:15 a.m. ET (4:15 p.m. local time)
Weather: 84 degrees
Scoring Summary: 1 2 3 F
USA 1 0 1 2
JPN 0 0 0 0
USA - Gabriel Silveira 8’48” (1st Period)
USA - Chris Albiston 4’45” (3rd)
USA: 1-Chris Toth, 2-Chris Albiston, 5-Nicolas Perea, 7-Nick Perera (captain), 9-Gabriel Silveira
Substitutes: *12-Xavier Snaer-Williams, 4-Fredo Dilbert, 3-Antonio Chavez, 6-William Lobato, 8-Conner Rezende
Head coach: Francis Farberoff
* Unused sub
JPN: 1-Yusuke Kawai, 6-Takuya Akaguma, 7-Takaaki Oba, 10-Ozu Moreira (Captain), 13-Yuki Kibune
Substitutes: 21-Shunsuke Michihata, 2-Hayate Tanaka, 3-Ryunosuke Ito, 5-Gaiya Saito, 19-Takahito Yamada
Head coach: Tomoya Ginoza
USA – Fredo Dilbert (caution) 8’12” (3rd Period)
USA – Nico Perea (caution) 0’34” (3rd)
Referee: Francisco De Oses Bumedien (ESP)
2nd Referee: Saverio Bottalico (ITA)
3rd Referee: Alvaro Canovas Garcia-Villarrubia (ESP)
Timekeeper: Ojaos Valera Alejandro (ESP)