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Ukraine, Spain, Portugal, Serbia jostle for position

Ukraine, Spain, Portugal and hosts Serbia will play in Monday's quarter-finals; who meets who is decided when Groups A and B end on a sell-out evening at Belgrade Arena.

Pedro Cary, Djô, Ricardinho and Arnaldo Pereira of Portugal train on Friday
Pedro Cary, Djô, Ricardinho and Arnaldo Pereira of Portugal train on Friday ©Sportsfile

We already know Ukraine, Spain, Portugal and hosts Serbia will play in the first two UEFA Futsal EURO 2016 quarter-finals on Monday; who meets who will be determined when Groups A and B end on Saturday on a sell-out evening at Belgrade Arena.


Group C: Kazakhstan 4-2 Croatia
Debutants Kazakhstan are through to the quarter-finals; Croatia now must beat Russia by two goals on Sunday to join them.

Group D: Azerbaijan 6-5 Czech Republic
A winner 40 seconds from time decided a game with 11 different scorers. The Czech Republic now must beat Italy on Sunday to deny either the Azzurri or Azerbaijan.


Victories against Hungary have ensured that both these teams are through, with Ukraine above Spain on goals scored and needing only a draw to top the group. Spain, however, showed in Tuesday's 5-2 defeat of Hungary that even without several key players through injury they have a depth of squad to remain clear contenders for the title.

Player to watch: Dmytro Bondar (Ukraine) – Stood out against Hungary with two goals and one assist. Of his chest down, turn and chip for his first goal, Bondar said: "I don't score too often. If you give me another 100 chances like that I would score only once!"

Key number: 12 – Spain have a perfect record from 12 games against Ukraine, including the 2001 final.

Watch: Hungary 3-6 Ukraine

Dmytro Bondar, Ukraine player: "After scoring twice and assisting once I don't feel a hero at all. Heroics are not important, all that matters is the result. We succeeded [against Hungary] even though I am pretty sure we can play better, so I expect some changes from the coaching staff."

Miguelín, Spain player: "It's going to be a difficult match for us. It will be a very different match [from the Hungary one] as Ukraine are physically very strong and they know how to play. They are aggressive in a good way and maybe technically not so strong as us, but we'll have to prove that on the pitch."

A sell-out crowd of 11,000, a UEFA Futsal EURO group stage record, watched hosts Serbia beat Slovenia 5-1 on Tuesday and every ticket has gone for Saturday's Group A decider. Portugal, who have Cardinal suspended for the entire group stage, thrashed Slovenia 6-2 to slip ahead of Serbia on goals scored and even with both teams through, avoiding Spain on Monday means much will be at stake.

Player to watch: Ricardinho (Portugal) – The Inter FS winger's huge reputation was only enhanced by his sensational hat-trick against Slovenia.

Key number: 100 – The back-heel for Ricardinho's first goal on Thursday was his 100th strike for Portugal.

Serbia delight sell-out crowd

Ricardinho, Portugal player: "It's always nice to say something like, 'You have to beat everyone if you want to become champions', but of course if you ask me then I will say that I prefer to finish first in our group to avoid Spain in the quarter-finals. I'm very happy with the three goals I scored and of course with the fact that the first one was my 100th for Portugal – but to be honest I'm not that happy with my performance. I can do much better and I’m the kind of player who gets better with more matches."

Aca Kovačević, Serbia coach: "It is not easy to start the tournament in front of a record crowd, so we needed almost the entire first half to get used to this wonderful atmosphere. Portugal are one of the four best teams in this tournament with Ricardinho, the best player in the world. I know it will be very difficult but we will have our chances for sure."

Romulo's stunning Russia strikes


Group C: Croatia v Russia (18.30)
Russia were made to work for their opening 2-1 victory against Kazakhstan as they aim to reach a third straight final. Croatia need a two-goal win to pip them.

Group D: Czech Republic v Italy (21.00)
Holders Italy wore that tag lightly as they dismissed Azerbaijan 3-0 on Wednesday. A Czech win takes them through; Italy will only miss out behind Azerbaijan if they lose by five.

Now watch ...

Ricardinho's brilliant hat-trick against Slovenia

Watch Ricardinho's dazzling hat-trick