Nicaragua won the title of a regional futsal tournament for under-20s on Saturday, after beating Costa Rica 4-0 in the final of the tournament.
Against all odds, the Nicaraguan team beat Mexico in the group stage, Cuba in the semifinals and Costa Rica in the final, three of the favorites to win the title, as well as the championship host, Guatemala.
The goals in the final on Saturday, July 23, for the Nicaraguan team were the work of Andy Cruz, Wesly Ruiz, Julio Espinoza and Cristian Fuentes.
Nicaragua, under the technical direction of Carlos Sotela, began the tournament with a 4-0 defeat against Guatemala last Monday, but corrected the way by beating Mexico (4-3) and getting their ticket to the next round as second place in the group A, below the host country.
In the semifinals, Sotela’s team advanced after beating Cuba 4-2, which had qualified as leader of group B, above Costa Rica.
One of the main figures for the Nicaraguans in the tournament was their captain, Leonardo Alvarado, who scored in the duel against the Mexicans in the first phase.
The tournament, organized by the Central American Football Union (Uncaf) under the name of “Uncaf Fifa Forward”, started last Monday with the Sports Dome of Guatemala City as the venue for all the matches.
In group A the teams from Guatemala, Mexico and Nicaragua were paired, while in group B Costa Rica, El Salvador and Cuba competed.
The Costa Ricans, the best futsal team in Central America in the absolute category, arrived as favorites for this Saturday’s final and the tournament, as did Cuba and Guatemala, the latter led by former world champion Jaime de León.
The third place in the regional championship was in the hands of Guatemala, which beat Cuba 5-2 this Saturday in the same sports arena.