Deaf players battle for world futsal crown
© FIFA.com

The world of deaf and hearing impaired sport will turn its undivided attention to Bulgarian capital Sofia from 8-18 November 2007 when the International Committee of Sports for the Deaf (ICSD) and the Bulgarian Deaf Sports Federation jointly stage the 2nd World Deaf Futsal Championships.

The men's tournament features 24 teams in four groups of six. The top two in each group qualify for the quarter-finals, with the remaining teams playing off for the places. Spain, Ukraine, Netherlands, Italy and Russia rate as pre-tournament favourites, although the non-European contingent could be capable of upsetting the established order.

Twelve nations are competing for the Women's world title, where Russia, England and Germany are expected to feature strongly. The spectators can look forward to plenty of thrills and excitement, especially once the tournaments reach the decisive knockout stages.

Men:

Group A: Spain, Uzbekistan, United Arab Emirates, Sweden, Ukraine, Norway
Group B: Netherlands, Saudi Arabia, Guinea, Switzerland, England, Slovakia Group C: Bulgaria, Azerbaijan, Sierra Leone, FYR Macedonia, Serbia, Italy
Group D: Russia, Thailand, Colombia, Turkey, Republic of Ireland, Israel

Women

Group A: Russia, Spain, Sweden, Germany, Italy, Denmark
Group B: England, Norway, Turkey, Israel, Switzerland, Japan

For more information, visit www.bdsf-bg.com/futsalen.html