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Araz fightback floors Kairat and secures bronze

Kairat Almaty 4-6 Araz Naxçivan
The hosts recovered from two goals down to edge a remarkable third-place game, with decisive strikes from Augusto and Eduardo.

Araz fightback floors Kairat and secures bronze
Araz fightback floors Kairat and secures bronze ©UEFA.com

Araz Naxçivan gained the consolation of the bronze medal at the 2013/14 UEFA Futsal Cup finals in Baku after coming from two down to edge a ten-goal thriller with Kairat Almaty in Saturday's third-place play-off.

Both sides had won this fixture previously – Araz in 2010, the Kazakh team a year later – but with Leo, Danilo Baron and Fumasa impressing, Kairat initially held the upper hand at the Sarhadchi Olympic Sport Complex. Cacau's men, deposed as European champions by FC Dynamo 48 hours earlier, led with first-half goals from Danilo and Fumasa.

After Amadeu and Adriano Foglia restored parity for Araz, Café and Foglia exchanged close-range finishes, only for Fumasa to seemingly chest in the winner. Fabiano had other ideas with a low strike which heralded further goals from Augusto and Eduardo.

One intriguing sub-plot had been the duel between Kairat's trigger-happy No10 Leo and Araz's Foglia. Although Kairat made good use of their flying keeper, two misunderstandings involving Higuita gave Foglia opportunities from his own half which he hit first wide, then against an upright.

Leo went closer still with an effort headed off the line as Kairat looked the more cohesive and controlled side. Their reward came five minutes before half-time when Danilo prodded in from Café's ball. Soon after, Serik Zhamankulov crossed low for Fumasa to finish via the inside of the post.

Araz responded to these setbacks after the break as Alesio's team, who had given everything in their penalties defeat by FC Barcelona, took advantage of Higuita's red card. Amadeu scored emphatically during the power play; and with Danilo pressed into flying keeper duties, Foglia did indeed score from his own territory.

If Café thought he had found the perfect answer with a back-post finish from Caio Júnior's centre, Foglia then converted Amadeu's assist. The drama was far from over, Fumasa turning in Leo's drive for 4-3, only for Fabiano to poke in another Araz equaliser. The Azerbaijani hosts were finally in front when Augusto slid in Fabiano's ball, prompting Eduardo to make sure from another Fabiano delivery.