50 - QUARTERLY REVIEW
FIFA BEACH SOCCER WORLD CUP - QUALIFIER EUROPE
BAHAMAS, HE S
eptember saw the first four teams guarantee their spots at the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup as Italy, Poland, Portugal and Switzerland came through the 10-day competition ahead of 23 others. Europeâ€™s qualification campaign was the first of the continental tournaments to be held ahead of the showpiece event in the Bahamas next year and it certainly didnâ€™t disappoint. Indeed, locals, tourists and beach soccer fans on the Italian coast
were treated to 82 thrilling matches during 11 non-stop, topnotch beach soccer days. An initial group stage saw eventual qualifiers Italy, Portugal and Switzerland top their groups with 100 per cent starts while Poland were one of seven to progress as runners-up. Hungary and Belarus also kept alive their hopes with third-place finishes as 12 teams moved into the second group stage, where the action really heated up.