Swiss trio are Russia 2021’s golden boys

29 Aug 2021
  • Noel Ott wins the adidas Golden Ball at Russia 2021

  • adidas Golden Scorer award goes to Glenn Hodel

  • Eliott Mounoud takes the adidas Golden Glove

FIFA’s Technical Study Group (TSG) have delivered their verdict, awarding the adidas Golden Ball at the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Russia 2021™ to Switzerland’s Noel Ott in recognition of his outstanding performances on the Moscow sand.

The award for the tournament’s top goalscorer went to Switzerland’s Glenn Hodel, who scored 12 goals, two more than his compatriot Dejan Stankovic and Japan’s Takuya Akaguma.

FIFA.com reveals the winners of the individual awards at Russia 2021.

adidas Golden Ball: Noel Ott (SUI) Nicknamed the “Lionel Messi of beach soccer”, the Swiss player did justice to his reputation throughout the tournament and showed why he is such an important player for his country, in both attack and defence. “He’s amazing, both as a player and a person. Words can’t describe him,” said his coach, Angelo Schirinzi. Switzerland captain Dejan Stankovic echoed that sentiment: “He’s so technically gifted; he can throw any opponent off balance. He always keeps an eye on his team-mates, which allows him to make the right decisions. He keeps his cool whether he’s shooting on goal or playing a team-mate in.”

adidas Silver Ball: Artur Paporotnyi (RFU) 
A solid, physical unit, RFU relished the challenge and were inspired by their vociferous fans. Their success was also down to the vast experience of their players. Commanding at the back and a veteran of their first world title in 2011, Paporotnyi is one of those seasoned campaigners who always stands tall when it matters.

adidas Bronze Ball: Raoul Mendy (SEN)
 The Lions of Teranga No.9 played a vital role in the African champions’ historic campaign. His brace in the quarter-final against Brazil was one of the standout moments of the tournament for Senegal’s fans. Mendy’s classy performance against the Brazilians was just a continuation of his group-phase form, where he scored a hat-trick against Uruguay and also impressed in the match with defending champions Portugal. Despite his immense talent, he went goalless in the semi-final meeting with Japan and the match for third place against Switzerland. Without his normally reliable supply of goals, Senegal had to settle for fourth place.

adidas Golden Scorer: Glenn Hodel (SUI)
 Eclipsed by team-mate Dejan Stankovic in the group phase, Hodel hit top gear in the knockout rounds, scoring four against Uruguay and then helping himself to hat-tricks against RFU and Senegal. The 24-year-old forward saved his best for last, latching on to a shot by Senegal keeper Al Seyni Ndiaye and sending the ball straight back into the opposition net for his final goal of Russia 2021.

MOSCOW, RUSSIA - AUGUST 29: Takuya Akaguma of Japan, Glenn Hodel of Switzerland, and Dejan Stankovic of Switzerland pose with their Adidas Scorer Awards following the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup 2021 Final match between Football Union of Russia and Japan at Luzhniki Beach Soccer Stadium on August 29, 2021 in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Octavio Passos - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)

adidas Silver Scorer: Dejan Stankovic (SUI)
 Stankovic was in unstoppable form in the group phase, scoring braces against Brazil and Belarus and putting four past El Salvador to almost single-handedly propel his team into the knockout stages. With 47 Beach Soccer World Cup goals now to his name, he is the tournament’s second-highest scorer of all time, though still some way behind Portugal’s Madjer on 88.

MOSCOW, RUSSIA - AUGUST 29: Dejan Stankovic 2of Switzerland celebrates with teammates after scoring their team's sixth goal during the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup 2021 3rd Place match between Switzerland and Senegal at Luzhniki Beach Soccer Stadium on August 29, 2021 in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Octavio Passos - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)

adidas Bronze Scorer: Takuya Akaguma (JPN) 
“Up front, they can play positional attacks and combine with the keeper too, all of it orchestrated by excellent ball players. With Japan, it’s the team that’s the star,” said TSG expert Claude Barrabe, discussing the Samurai Blue’s merits before the final. The Japanese could also count on the exceptional talent of Takuya Akaguma. Their highest scorer at Paraguay 2019, the forward found the back of the net in five of his team’s six matches, his brace in the final momentarily keeping them in with a chance of winning the tournament.

adidas Golden Glove: Eliott Mounoud (SUI)
 The 26-year-old Swiss keeper was the ultimate last line of defence, proving his worth throughout the tournament. He is also a very useful footballer, as he showed in regularly coming out of his box to combine with his team-mates and spark many an attacking move. Just for good measure, he chipped in with three goals, two of them coming in the match for third place. “Eliott is an incredible player,” said Stankovic. “He never panics, even when he’s got two opposition players trying to close him down. No matter what happens, he stays calm and gets the ball away. We’re lucky to have him. He’s only 26 and he’s got plenty of World Cups and a great future ahead of him.”

MOSCOW, RUSSIA - AUGUST 28: Eliott Mounoud of Russia in action during the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup 2021 Semi Final match between Football Union Of Russia and Switzerland at Luzhniki Beach Soccer Stadium on August 28, 2021 in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Octavio Passos - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)

FIFA Fair Play Trophy: Brazil
 Brazil won the FIFA Fair Play Trophy thanks to their exemplary approach on the sand at Russia 2021. The most successful team in the history of the Beach Soccer World Cup reached the quarter-finals before going down 5-4 to Senegal, but showed respect at all times for their opponents and the match officials.

MOSCOW, RUSSIA - AUGUST 26: Rodrigo of Brazil (obscured) celebrates with team mates after scoring their side's first goal during the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup 2021 Quarter-final match between Senegal and Brazil at Luzhniki Beach Soccer Stadium on August 26, 2021 in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Octavio Passos - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)