Brazil has retained the Futsal World Cup with a 3-2 extra time win against Spain.
After finishing regulation time 2-2, Brazil through Neto put away the winning goal with 19 seconds left to win their fifth World Cup.
Goals from Neto and Falcao in regulation time were matched with goals from Aicardo and Torras as both sides experienced periods of domination in another epic battle between the world’s two best sides.
In a timid start to the game, chances would come few and far between in the opening stages with both sides warming to the game.
Spain found their way past the stubborn Brazilian defence in the 5th minute when an Aicardo run down the wing was cut back to Lozano who struck for goal. Deflecting off a stray foot, Fernandao had the task of putting away the loose ball however Vinicius was there to clear off the line.
Tension on both sides was beginning to rise as a terrible challenge from Je saw the interchange of Spain’s top scorer Lozano, clutching his ankle. Running a fine line after the challenge, Je continued to hassle the Spanish side, taking down Aicardo moments later but it was the Spanish who missed a guilt-edged opportunity.
It became an end-to-end affair as Spain gained the upper hand with the most sights on goal and Fernandao troubling the Brazilians with his size and strength.
Brazil sent their first warning shot to their opponents two minutes from half-time as Vinicius, shepherding the Spanish defence, opened the path for Je and Rafael to combine a fire over the bar, albeit from a large deflection.
Spain almost snatched the lead before the break when a set piece saw Miguelin strike the ball towards Fernandao’s feet. The Brazilian-born Spaniard looked to direct the ball to the back post with a deftly flick however his effort was just wide, sending the Spanish into half-time with a great level of confidence.
The introduction of Falcao after the break sparked the South Americans into action as Brazil saw a string of chances fall to Ari and the legend himself in the opening stages.
Brazil continued to press and finally received their breakthrough in the 25th minute as Neto’s long range strike from the corner fizzed past Juanjo and into the bottom corner, scoring his fifth of the tournament.
As expected, Spain’s search for an equaliser saw the European Champions pepper Thiago’s goal with Fernandao being the man again to pester the final line.
After a down field free kick was given against Ari on Fernandao, a combination between Kike and Miguelin saw a shot saved by Thiago and the follow up put away by Torras from the acute angle in the 30th minute.
As quickly as the Spaniards restored parity, it was only a minute later that they had taken the lead after a corner was played to Aicardo who had his slightly deflected shot sneak into Thiago’s near post, forcing the Brazilians to suddenly chase the game.
A foul from Thaigo on the edge of the “D” saw Spain’s opportunity to put the game beyond doubt vanish as Torras’ strike rocketed off the crossbar, forcing the Brazilians to use the 5th man in the search for the equaliser.
The tactical change had an immediate effect as Falcao, just like his quarter-final performance against Argentina, put Brazil back on equal terms with a brilliant strike that found the top corner.
Extra time was needed to decide the outcome and both teams began the first period much like the opening of regulation time.
Falcao almost weaved his magic once again as a direct throw from Thiago found the number 12’s chest but the futsaling legend was unable to get a foot to the ball as it gratefully fell into the hands of Juanjo.
Miguelin looked to test Thiago from distance with 30 seconds left in the opening period and the Brazil number one was up to the task, parrying away to safety.
The second half saw both sides get more desperate as an innocuous challenge from Fernandao in his attacking half saw Brazil head to the penalty spot for the sixth foul which saw Gabriel step up and miss.
With 19 seconds left on the clock, a stirring run down the wing by Neto saw him strike towards the back post, thundering off the upright, into the back of the net and handing the Brazilians their fifth futsal World Cup.