This past weekend, our FUTSOC FUTALAN RED U19 BOYS, participated in the renowned Dimitri Cup in Naples, Fl. The team, built around current and prior players, gave a strong performance as it played to two ties and a single loss.
Opening with a strong, physical and overwhelming performance against a powerful Brasilian side ORDIN FC – who ended winning the tournament, the defense displayed very strong, tight marking and thwarted every chance the talented side presented. The final score ended with a 0::0 tie after a very competitive 60/40 match, which was dominated by our young boys. The second match pitted us against a strong local side – South Dade Elite FC, and giving up an early goal in the 23rd minute on a careless error, we went on to entirely dominate the match. Despite many opportunities, we could not find the net and the final tally stood at 0::1. The final match was played the following morning, against a very respected SRUSA SWFL ELITE FC, with a 2::2 score line, which reflected the team’s anemic state at this final meaningless match. Overall, the results were extremely positive, attaining the semi-finals, as our team performed defensively at the highest level, created attacking options at will and we were able to observe and evaluate various players for promotion to the next level – 1 fifteen year old, 4 seventeen year old players and a grouping of very young U18 boys.
This weekend the FUTSOC FUTALAN RED U16’s played at the premier-level Dimitri Cup youth soccer tournament and for the first time this season played in the gold bracket. This would prove to be a great test, as it was a new enhanced level for the squad.
In the opening match, the FUTSOC FUTALAN RED played Key Biscayne FC U16 - a team ranked #19 in the State of Florida. Our boys did everything to keep scoring to a minimum, with tight zonal marking from the back line and with goalkeeper Ricardo Bowen recording double digit saves. However, during the final 5 minutes of the game, the opposition was able, to counter and find the net to win 1-0. As a side note, that highly regarded team would go one to win the tournament without allowing any goals.
The next match against a tough Braden River FC was difficult in a very different way, as this team was extremely fast, making quick runs that were difficult to manage. We had our chances but could not find the back of the net, losing in the end by the tight score of 2-0.
Our final match was against a fellow South Florida club - Pine Crest FC of Miami, a team that is well known and respected for its high level of play and its creative Latin-based player group. Without a doubt playing our best game do date and though going down 2-0 by half time on two unusual errors, we had many plays making it up field and into the penalty area. In the opening of the second half, our opponent had a quick run down the middle and out bodied our defenders, to tally the third and final goal. On a positive note, during the final 20 minutes of the game, we began attacking heavily, getting to the opposing goal with greater ease…but stopped many times. Finally, with only 10 minutes left in the match, an attack started by midfielder Daniel Pimentel, broke through the stout opponent’s defense. Our most recent addition to the team - Nicolas Fernandez, scored the only goal of the tournament and his first goal for the ever-improving team.