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Spanish Futsal Cup success for Barcelona

A Torras hat-trick helped FC Barcelona achieve a record-equaling feat in lifting the Copa de España for the third time in as many seasons while the other UEFA finalists are also on form.

Barcelona's Torras struck a hat-trick in the final
Barcelona's Torras struck a hat-trick in the final ©www.fcbarcelona.cat

UEFA Futsal Cup challengers FC Barcelona lifted the Copa de España for a third consecutive season after Marc Carmona's side overcame Murcia FS 4-2 in the final.

Unperturbed by Bebe's ninth minute opener for Murcia in front of 4,000 fans at the Pabellón Caja Madrid, the Blagrana responded through a Jordi Torras hat-trick and a further strike from Fernandao to gain revenge on their opponents – for whom Álex scored a consolation – for a Spanish Super Cup semi-final defeat last September.

Barcelona had made their way through by beating Sala 10 Zaragoza 7-2 on Thursday and Lobelle de Santiago in Saturday's semi-final. Yet they were a goal down to Murcia in the ninth minute in the Spanish capital when Bebe's shot thundered in off the upright. 

The UEFA Futsal Cup holders struck back through Torras – later voted player of the tournament – who took advantage of a Fernandao assist before beating Rafa in the Murcia goal.

Sergio Lozano turned provider shortly after the quarter-hour mark when his good work on the wing led to Torras's second before Fernandao made it 3-1 after the restart following a fine counterattacking move. 

Victors against Ribera Navarra and Segovia FS in the quarter-finals and semi-finals respectively, Murcia looked to respond with Miguelin striking a post. Torras's third made a comeback unlikely, however, and while Álex made it 4-2 with five minutes to go, Barcelona prevailed to win the Copa de España for the third time in a row, a feat only previously achieved by Segovia.

"We are making history with this team and we don't want to put any limits on ourselves," Torras said. "This group is fantastic and it's something of great pride to form part of it," the 32-year-old continued. "We started the season badly but were eager to work hard in order to do well in this competition. We achieved our goal."

Coach Carmona added, "It was really hard. We suffered a fair bit today but then came good. We competed well in the three games having come here with perhaps a few doubts in our minds."

The current Liga leaders will next look to retain their UEFA Futsal Cup title when they travel to Tbilisi for the finals which take place from 26 to 28 April. Also in the semi-finals as hosts Iberia Star Tbilisi, Kairat Almaty, and the side Barcelona beat to win their crown last April, MFK Dinamo. The draw will be next month.

Kairat have begun life under new coach Cacau, who has also been given the Kazakhstan national team job. They have been in prime form, last week beating Ushkyn-Iskra Astana 8-3 and 12-2 to add to 20-1 and 17-2 defeat of Taypak a few days earlier. They lead SKA-Yug by ten points with eight games left.

Iberia, meanwhile, won 17-2 at Burji Telavi on Saturday to maintain their perfect record in Georgia, with TSU Tbilisi nine points behind with a game in hand. Dinamo too are on top in Russia, leading TTG-Ugra Yugorsk by six points while also holding a game in hand.