After utter domination in Group F the two leading sides are set to go head to head in attempt to stamp their authority, while across Group E both automatic spots could get wrapped up with a game to spare. FIFA.com runs the rule over matchday six at the FIFA Futsal World Cup Colombia 2016.
Match of the day
Azerbaijan-Spain, Group F, 18:00 (local time)
It’s fair to say both sides raced out of the blocks on matchday three. Giving no regard to their opponents’ status as continental champions, the pair knocked five past Morocco and Iran respectively in an impressive show of force. What happens when they meet will be intriguing.
Spain of course arrive with the pedigree of being two-time champions and reigning kings of Europe. Debutants Azerbaijan come with no such assured record, but will be keen to show that they weren’t just a flash in the pan during their opening bow.
The other matches
Iran and Morocco, both who arrived with high hopes having enjoy continental success, will see the leaders’ clash in Group F as an opportunity to be at worst a point from an automatic spot should they triumph. A draw will do neither any favours though.
After frustrating Argentina for so much of their opening Group E clash without reward, Kazakhstan will look to turn potential into points as they take on a Costa Rica side who needed help from the penalty spot to get their tournament fully up and running against the Solomon Islands.
While the Copa America de Futsal holders sit level on points with leaders Costa Rica, Argentina boss Diego Giustozzi made it clear everything wasn’t as he wanted. He will be hoping to put that right when they take on a spirited Solomon Islands side who gave Costa Rica a scare.
Player to watch
If you don’t keep your eyes on him you’re almost certain to lose him, as more often than not the Kazakhstan keeper is anywhere but his goal. Working the wings, charging into the opposition’s half and overflowing with confidence when the ball is at his feet, as Argentina found out, expect the unexpected. But with the deciding goal in their clash arriving after he was dispossessed, for better or worse he’s likely to be the centre of the action.
4 – Morocco are on a run of four defeats in four games at the FIFA Futsal World Cup, having not picked up a point on their debut during Thailand 2012. They’ll hope the rest of their group stage doesn’t have a sense of de ja vu to it, as their final two games there were against Iran and Spain, just as they are in Colombia. They even began with a five-goal defeat – in this case 8-3 – to a debutant in the shape of Panama.
“I think I can tell you many, many problems [that Argentina will cause us], I could give you a big list ahead of the game on Thursday night.” Solomon Islands coach Juliano Schmeling
Costa Rica-Kazakhstan (18:00, Bucaramanga)
Argentina-Solomon Islands (20:00, Bucaramanga)
Azerbaijan-Spain (18:00, Medellin)
Iran-Morocco (20:00, Medellin)