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Kairat's Higuita: 'We want to make history'

Kairat Almaty's outfield-friendly goalkeeper Higuita has been key to their two UEFA Futsal Cup triumphs – and he is determined to help them make history this weekend.

Higuita celebrates winning the 2015 UEFA Futsal Cup
Higuita celebrates winning the 2015 UEFA Futsal Cup ©Sportsfile

Few players in world futsal have become as recognisable in recent years as Higuita.

As his nickname suggests, he is a goalkeeper, but the Brazil-born Kazakhstan and Kairat Almaty player is just as well known for his forays into outfield. Higuita's unique ability has been exploited by Kairat coach Cacau to help them to UEFA Futsal Cup glory in 2013 and 2015, as well as for Kazakhstan's UEFA Futsal EURO 2016 bronze.

Now Higuita and Kairat hope to make it a record-equalling three UEFA Futsal Cups when they host the finals from Friday, and the goalkeeper spoke about the "greatest feeling of lifting the trophy", the Almaty Arena atmosphere and what Cacau has done for his career.

See how Kairat won 2015 title

On the UEFA Futsal Cup ...

It's the biggest competition of the year for us. We have to play well to prove our class again. And if we win at home it will be doubly satisfying.

It was the greatest feeling in my life [to win the trophy] because this is the best and most important tournament in the world. When you lift the trophy you understand that your team have done their very best and achieved success.

We don't just want to win – we want to make history. We have a chance to win this trophy for a third time, which is something only Inter have done. We want to become one of the best teams in the world and we are close to it.

On home advantage ...

The most important thing is that we are playing at home. Our country and our fans will support us, and we will feed off the energy of the Kazakh public. So for us it's very important. We won't only be making futsal history, we can become part of Kazakhstan's history. We want to present this trophy to Kazakhstan and the people.

Watch Kazakhstan claim historic bronze

As for the Almaty Arena, it's simply superb. It's huge, 12,000 fans. We played the elite round there and we've already discussed how it will look in the finals. I'm sure everything will be wonderful and spectacular. The Almaty Arena is one of the world's best of its kind.

On coach Cacau ...

The best person I know – I can't even explain. He's very kind and always creates a great atmosphere in the team. He emits positive energy every day in training. He is also a very good coach. He reads the game, he can motivate and he studies other teams really well. He's one of the best coaches in the world, 100%.

On his goalkeeping style ...

I don't have any secrets. You can watch my performances on YouTube. I've been playing this way for a long time, since childhood. When Cacau arrived, he understood me at once and said I could be very useful for the whole team. The coach raised my confidence so I began to play better.