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Inter and Kairat explode into life

Victories for FC Barcelona and Lokomotiv Kharkiv mean they will play off for a final four place on Saturday, while Inter FS and Kairat Almaty made fine elite round starts.

Inter celebrate one of their six goals against Varna
Inter celebrate one of their six goals against Varna ©Sporting Clube de Portugal

Inter FS and Kairat Almaty made an explosive start to their UEFA Futsal Cup elite round groups, while FC Barcelona and Lokomotiv Kharkiv are on course for a Group D showdown on Saturday.

Group A day one
Inter FS 6-0 FC Grand Pro Varna
• Three-time winners Inter showed their pedigree against a Varna side that started the competition in the preliminary round, though it was only in the second half that the favourites pulled away from the Bulgarian outfit. Two goals up at the break, Inter eased home as Rubén Orzáez, Mel and Mario Rivillos struck in the opening eight minutes of the second half before Jesús Jiménez became the sixth different scorer for the Spanish side.  

Sporting Clube de Portugal 5-3 Futsal Team Charleroi
• Pedro Cary scored after four seconds as hosts and seeded side Sporting won an eventful Group A opener. The Portuguese side appeared home and dry as they cruised into a 3-0 lead inside seven minutes but the sending off of goalkeeper Cristiano, moments after Nicolas Trussart had pulled one back, muddied the waters. Cary and Fábio Aguiar made it 5-1 but the Belgian outfit came again only to find the deficit too insurmountable.

Group C day one
KMF Ekonomac Kragujevac 1-4 Sporting Club de Paris
• Elite round debutants Sporting Paris dominated from the off and were extremely solid in defence, Augusto scoring two of their goals either side of efforts from Café and Alexandre Teixeira. "Every match is like a final for us," said Sporting boss Rodolphe Lopes. "Today, we played in the final and won. Tomorrow we'll play in the final and might lose. Our main task was not to concede first. We were able to play our passing game and scored some nice goals."

Kairat Almaty 11-2 FK Nikars Riga
• Hosts Kairat were beaten 6-5 by Nikars in a Yeryomenko Cup game earlier this month, but avenged that defeat in some style. The 2013 UEFA Futsal Cup winners were 5-0 up inside 12 minutes, profiting as Maksims Seņs was fielded as a flying goalkeeper for much of the game – Marcão, tellingly, scoring from inside his own box. "We had no brains, no organisation," fumed Nikars coach Orlando Duarte. "It is my responsibility. You shouldn't lose 11-2, even against the best team in the world."

Group D day two
MVFC Berettyóújfalu 1-4 Lokomotiv Kharkiv
• Mykola Bilotserkivets scored twice early on to keep Lokomotiv on the right track as they followed up their matchday one success against Baku United with a second victory. Richárd Dávid reduced the deficit, but Serhiy Zhurba opened up a two-goal lead again for the Ukrainian side. Berettyóújfalu pushed forward more in the second period, but Dmytro Fedorchenko struck once more for Lokomotiv, a second defeat meaning the Hungarian side can go no further, regardless of Saturday's results.

FC Barcelona 5-1 Baku United FC
• The holders earned a comfortable success against the first English side to play in the elite round. The hosts took command with first half goals from Carlos Filho, Gabriel and Saad, and though Ari's own goal offered the visitors hope, it was dashed when Gabriel and Sergio Lozano completed the scoring. They will now play Lokomotiv for a place in the final four when the group concludes on Saturday.