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Interviú end wait, Sporting keep title

Three-time UEFA Futsal Cup winners Inter FS are back in Europe after beating Murcia FS to win the Spanish title while Sporting Clube de Portugal retained theirs.

Interviú had another title to celebrate
Interviú had another title to celebrate ©Sportsfile

Inter FS have been crowned Spanish Futsal Primera División champions for a ninth time following a clean sweep of victories in their title play-off series against Murcia FS.

Having lifted the Copa de España earlier in the season – when Murcia were also Inter's victims – Jesús Velasco's side capped a fine campaign with their first Liga triumph for six years.  

On their way to this season's Liga play-off, which they reached with an unbeaten home record, the Green Machine displayed their prowess by dismantling Ribera Navarra in the quarter-finals, the Madrid-based side following up their 5-2 first leg win with a 7-1 triumph at home. Their final opponents Murcia were pushed hard at the same stage, taking three games to see off the challenge of CD Burela FS. 

FS Santa Coloma were the next team to feel Inter's might, the Catalan outfit going down 4-0 and 8-1 at the semi-final stage. Duda's Murcia were pushed all the way by defending champions and UEFA Futsal Cup winners FC Barcelona before the southern side claimed a 1-0 win in the tie's deciding third match to reach the final.

Hosting the first and second of the team's title play-off games at the Caja Madrid in Alcalá de Henares, on account of finishing the regular season ahead of Murcia, Interviú took a 1-0 series lead after a pulsating opening encounter ended 4-3 in their favour. Velasco's men then went 2-0 ahead 24 hours later thanks to a more commanding 4-1 victory.

Knowing that victory at their own Palacio de Deportes de Murcia in the third match of a five-game series was imperative to keeping their title hopes alive, Duda's side went in search of goals from the outset. Former Spain international Kike, who announced his retirement at the conclusion of the season, gave the hosts the perfect start with the first goal in the seventh minute. Borja subsequently equalised before a Rafa own goal handed the initiative back to Murcia.

From that moment on, Interviú demonstrated their determination and winning character, scoring three times in 12 minutes to turn the game on its head. Batería struck shortly before the half-hour to make it 2-2 while Nano Modrego edged his side in front late on. With Murcia playing the closing stages with a fly goalkeeper, Interviú took advantage to seal the victory thanks to Carlos Ortiz's fourth goal.  

"The last game started with a lot of tension and intensity while we were lacking fluidity," said victorious coach Velasco. "Having said that, we remained focused, despite the fact that we were trailing, and that concentration proved the key [to our victory]." 

The following day Sporting Clube de Portugal sealed their 12th Liga title, and second in a row, by beating Fundão 4-3 after extra time to wrap up a 3-1 series victory. Sporting, the 2011 UEFA Futsal Cup runners-up, won 3-0 and 4-2 in Lisbon last weekend but celebrations were delayed on Saturday when AD Fundão, who in the previous round denied regular season table-toppers SL Benfica a first final in 13 years, prevailed in the first of their two home fixtures, 4-1 on penalties after a 2-2 draw.

Coach Nuno Dias said: "There is no doubt we deserved this title. I do not think we should even have needed to go to extra time considering how superior we were."