Thailand thrive on timely goals
© Foto-net

Thailand broke open a close game by scoring two goals a minute apart to record a 5-3 Group B win over the United States in the FIFA Futsal World Cup on Saturday.

The result kept Thailand in the hunt for the final phase while the US were eliminated at Maracanazhino.

USA had the game's first clear chance, but goalkeeper Surapong Tompa stopped Denison Cabral's penalty kick with his face.

The Thais took control by scoring twice within a short span as Eakapong Suratsawang connected off a counter-attack in the 14th minute and Prasert Innui (after a set piece from a corner kick in the 16th minute.

The Americans closed the gap as Mike Apple found the back of the net just before the halftime whistle in the 20th minute. Apple turned playmaker, setting up Cabral's equalizer two minutes into the second half.

But Thailand again took over the game for good, again with two quick goals, off a counterattack and a set piece, Lertchai Issarasuwipakorn in the 29th minute and Panuwat Janta in the 30th minute.

Sermphan Khmthinkaew gave the Thais a two-goal bulge in the 39th minute before the US's Pat Morris closed out the scoring in the final minute.