Three reasons why Russia can win gold

  • Key individual talents, defensive adjustments and desire for revenge

  • We take a look at each aspect, ahead of the final

  • Kick-off: Thursday 18 October, Main Futsal Hall, 13:00 (local time)

Russia have reached the final of the Men’s Youth Olympic Futsal Tournament Buenos Aires 2018, where they will face Russia on Thursday 18 October in the Main Futsal Hall. lays out three reasons why the Russians are capable of claiming the gold medal.

Key individual talents

In a side known for its slick team moves, four players stand out. All of them were key against IR Iran, when the team checked into the semi-finals, and then in their last-four meeting with Egypt. These are: goalkeeper Denis Subbotin and forwards Danil Karpiuk (7 goals, 5 assists), Ilia Fedorov (5 and 2) and Maxim Okulov (3 and 2).

Defensive adjustments

After shipping six goals against Brazil and four against Solomon Islands, coach Sergei Skorovich adjusted his defensive transitions and closed down the spaces better when dealing with positional attacks. The result was just one goal conceded in each of their last two games. Both aspects will be key, if they are to stop a Brazilian offence they have already suffered at the hands of.

Desire for revenge

Russia felt their 6-1 rout by Brazil in the group phase was not a true reflection of the game or the difference between the sides. So what better way to prove that than by beating them in the final to claim the gold?