U.S. Men’s Beach Soccer National Team To Face Spain, Portugal And Japan At Mundialito Gran Canaria 2022
Head Coach Francis Farberoff Calls in 10 Players to Face Spain on July 21, Portugal on July 22 and Japan on July 23 in the Canary Islands, Spain
CHICAGO, Ill. (July 20, 2022) – U.S. Beach Soccer Men’s National Team head coach Francis Farberoff has called up 10 players to represent the United States at the Mundialito Gran Canaria 2022 from July 21-23, 2022. The U.S. is set to face host Spain on July 21, Portugal on July 22 and Japan on July 23 at Playa del Ingles, Gran Canaria in Spain’s Canary Islands off the coast of Morocco.
Eight of the 10 players were part of the USA’s roster for the 2021 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup in Russia, led by 2021 Beach Male Player of the Year Nico Perea, who scored seven total goals at the World Cup and Concacaf Beach Championship in his first year with the Beach MNT.
The team also features three-time World Cup veterans Nick Perera- who has scored over 100 international goals- and goalkeeper Chris Toth, who was named Best Goalkeeper at the 2016 Mundialito.
U.S. BEACH SOCCER MEN’S NATIONAL TEAM ROSTER (HOMETOWN)
*Part of 2021 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Roster ^First International Beach MNT Training Camp
This year marks the 24th edition of the Mundialito Beach Soccer tournament. The inaugural competition was held in 1994 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It restarted in 1997 in Portugal and was played there yearly through 2019. Paused for two years due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the four-team round-robin event moves to Spain for the first time in 2022.
USA SCHEDULE AT MUNDIALITO 2022:
Thursday, July 21: USA v Spain (7 p.m. local / 2 p.m. ET)
Friday, July 22: USA v Portugal (4:15 p.m. local / 11:15 a.m. ET)
Saturday, July 23: USA v Japan (4:15 p.m. local / 11:15 a.m. ET)
Matches will be streamed live on Recast, Beach Soccer Worldwide’s official streaming platform.
Played under various formats with numerous teams in the early years, Brazil leads the way with 14 Mundialito titles, followed by Portugal with seven and the USA (1998) and Spain (2013) with one each.
The U.S. will be participating in the Mundialito for the sixth time and first since 2016. After a third-place finish in 1994, the USA won the tournament in 1998, topping Group C with victories over Canada, Japan and Italy, before defeating Spain in the quarterfinals, Brazil in the semis and Peru in the final.
The Mundialito became a four-team round-robin tournament in 2008. The U.S. finished fourth in 2010 and 2014 and third in 2016.
ROSTER AND OPPONENT NOTES:
Nick Perera is the Beach MNT’s all-time leading scorer with 103 tallies in 83 career games.
Forward Gabriel Silveira led the USA with seven goals at the 2021 Concacaf Beach Soccer Championship in Costa Rica and added two more at the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup in Russia.
Chris Albiston (2), Fredo Dilbert (2), Chris Toth (2), Conner Rezende and Antonio Chavez also scored at the Concacaf Championship. Chavez, who was an alternate for the World Cup team, was named best Young Player in the regional tournament.
Perera participated in the 2014 and 2016 Mundialitos, while Toth took part in 2016 and was named Best Goalkeeper. Perera scored twice in 2014 against Japan and had six goals in 2016 (one vs. Brazil, one vs. Portugal, four vs. China).
Goalkeeper Xavier Snaer-Williams and forward William Lobato will be looking to make the international beach soccer debuts. Snaer-Williams was on last year’s World Cup roster but did not see action in Russia. Lobato has been called to a number of domestic training camps, however this is his first international tournament.
The USA and Japan have met frequently in recent years, including at the 2019 and 2021 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cups. Japan won 4-3 at Paraguay 2019 and 4-3 at Russia 2021. The USA’s last win over Japan was a 5-3 victory at the 2018 Balaton Cup in Siófok, Hungary. Japan has advanced to the semifinals of the last two FIFA Beach Soccer World Cups, coming in fourth in 2019 and falling to Russia in the final in 2021.
The USA and Spain last met on sand in 2018. Spain won 4-3 at the Bahamas Beach Soccer Cup and the USA edged the Europeans by the same 4-3 score at the 2018 Intercontinental Cup in Dubai. Spain was runner-up at the 2003, 2004 and 2013 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cups.
The USA and Portugal met last in 2016, with Portugal winning 4-1 at the Copa Pilsner in El Salvador and 6-5 at the Mundialito. After the USA defeated Portugal 7-5 at the 1997 Beach Soccer World Cup, Portugal has won the last 9 meetings, including at the 1998, 1999, 2001, 2005 and 2007 World Cups and the 2010, 2014 and 2016 Mundialitos. A world powerhouse, Portugal has won two of the last four FIFA Beach Soccer World Cups (2015 and 2019).