The road to Bahamas
2017 South American Beach Soccer Championship hosts Paraguay made a strong start to their world finals qualification bid, defeating Bolivia 4-2 and then coming from behind to record an emphatic 7-3 win over Chile. Top place in the section was secured with respective 7-1 and 5-2 defeats of Uruguay and Argentina, which gave them a semi-final against Ecuador, where the Paraguayans sealed their ticket to Bahamas 2017 with a 5-3 victory. Brazil proved too strong in the final, however, the hosts going down 7-5.
Strengths and style
Paraguay’s main strength lies in attack, as their tally of 33 goals in their six qualifying matches suggests. Six of those strikes came from Carlos Carballo, who was named most valuable player of the tournament, and eight from Pedro Moran. The Guaraní defence was no less impressive, though it had little answer to the speedy interplay of A Canarinha in the final, shipping only four goals fewer to the Brazilians than they had let in en route to the final.
FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup record
In making their FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup debut at Tahiti 2013, Paraguay failed to progress beyond the group phase, though they did score a big win over Côte d’Ivoire before going down narrowly to Japan and, after extra time, eventual champions Russia. The South Americans had only one win to show for their efforts again at Portugal 2015, overcoming Madagascar in Group D after losing to the Russians once more and Tahiti.