Iberia Star Tbilisi, Marca Futsal, City'US Târgu Mureş, KMF Ekonomac Kragujevac and Uragan Ivano-Frankovsk all earned UEFA Futsal Cup elite round places with a match to spare on Wednesday night and Slov-Matic Bratislava are well placed to join them.
In the three main round mini-tournament that began on Tuesday, only in Group 3 are both qualifiers not already decided. Hosts Iberia are definitely in the 11 October elite round draw after an 11-0 defeat of FC Geneva moved them on to six points. Giorgi Altunashvili scored a first-half hat-trick, Bruno Melo added three of his own after the break and 17-year-old Vakhtang Jvarashvili struck twice late on. The crowd of 4,500 broke the main round record that was set in Tbilisi yesterday.
Meanwhile Bratislava – held 5-5 by Geneva yesterday – ended FC Mapid Minsk's hopes 2-1, the Belarusian side leading at half-time through Aleksandr Olshevski but Martin Rejžek and Peter Kozar turning the game after the break. Bratislava are three points ahead of Geneva, who must beat Mapid on Friday, hope Slov-Matic lose to Iberia and overturn a current relative goal difference deficit of 12.
Group 5 and 6, meanwhile, are already decided save for which of the qualifiers will finish first. Italian debutants Marca Futsal secured a second Group 5 win in Romania as they overcame MNK Split 4-1, including a goal from Edgar Bertoni, a past competition runner-up with Interviú Madrid in 2007, and one at each end by Croatian international Dario Marinović. And Marca were joined on six points by hosts City'US Târgu Mureş, 7-1 winners against FS Ilves Tampere aided by a Florin Ignat hat-trick, goals from Florin and Marius Matei and a late strike by keeper Carlão. That last-minute effort means Târgu Mureş lead on goals scored so a draw against Marca on Friday would clinch first place and better elite round seeding.
Over in Serbia, hosts KMF Ekonomac Kragujevac and Ukrainian debutants Uragan Ivano-Frankovsk have progressed from Group 6. AC Omonia gave Uragan a tough challenge in losing 6-4 last night but today went down 5-1 to a Predrag Rajić-inspired Ekonomac. Urugan then beat Asa Ben Gurion 6-4, Valentyn Tsvelykh getting a first-half treble for the Ukrainian side and although the Israeli outfit did score three without reply after the break, they are out. Urugan must defeat Ekonomac on Friday to finish top.
Châtelineau Futsal and FK EP Chrudim have previously gone through from Group 4 to join the four teams seeded to November's elite round, holders ASD Città di Montesilvano C/5, Sporting Clube de Portugal, Kairat Almaty and Araz Naxçivan. The remaining two groups begin on Thursday with the side that beat Interviú in the 2007 final, MFK Dinamo Moskva, and first-time entrants FC Barcelona among those in action.
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