Lithuania 2021 begins on Sunday
We deliver some stats from FIFA Futsal World Cup history
Some 11-a-side greats have graced the competition
Russia scored 50 goals over their four group-stage games at the 2008 finals – one more than opponents Brazil. Russia 31-2 Solomon Islands from that pool remains the biggest victory and highest-scoring game in FIFA Futsal World Cup™ history.
Falcao has scored a record 48 goals in the competition. The Brazil legend has also made the most Futsal World Cup appearances (34).
|Saeid Rajabi||IR Iran||17||8||2.13|
46 years and two months makes Lithuania-bound Czech Republic goalkeeper Libor Gercak the oldest player to ever go to a FIFA Futsal World Cup. He seizes the record from Kazu Miura, who was 45 when he played at Thailand 2012 with Japan. Solomon Islands winger Raphael Leai, who turned 18 on Thursday, is the youngest player in Lithuania.
32 players make the Spanish league comfortably the best-represented at Lithuania 2021, with nine squads boasting players from the Primera Division. It is followed by the Portuguese championship on 23, with no other having more than 16 representatives. Curiously, despite its national team missing out on the competition for the first time in over two decades, Italy's Serie A is home to 13 players at this tournament. Glucosoral (Guatemala), Kairat (Kazakhstan), San Miguelito (Panama) and European champions Sporting (Portugal) are the best-represented clubs in Lithuania, with nine players apiece.
19 players have been to both the FIFA Futsal World Cup and the FIFA World Cup™. They include Brian Laudrup, who dazzled for Denmark at Netherlands 1989 and France 1998; Lakhdar Belloumi, who also shone on Dutch courts that same year and inspired Algeria’s stunning 2-1 upset of West Germany on their World Cup debut in 1982; US Soccer Hall of Famers Jeff Agoos, Bruce Murray, Tab Ramos and Peter Vermes; Willy Okpara, who went to Hong Kong 1992 as an outfielder and France 1998 as a goalkeeper; and Rolando ‘El Principito’ Fonseca, Costa Rica’s all-time leading marksman.
Manoel Tobias scored 19 goals for Brazil at Guatemala 2000 – a record for one edition of the tournament. IR Iran’s Saeid Rajabi and Pula of Russia hit a next-high 16 apiece in 1992 and 2008 respectively.
Twelve players who have lifted the FIFA Futsal World Cup trophy will be at Lithuania 2021. Guitta and Rodrigo did so with Brazil in 2012, while Santiago Basile, Cristian Borruto, Alan Brandi, Leandro Cuzzolino, Guido Mosenson, Maximiliano Rescia, Nicolas Sarmiento, Damian Stazzone, Pablo Taborda and Constantino Vaporaki helped Argentina to glory in 2016.
Ricardinho and Ferrao have won the last seven Best Player in the World awards – awarded by Futsal Planet – between them. The Portugal No10 triumphed every year from 2014 to '18 to outrank Falcao’s record of four titles, while the Brazil No11 has claimed the last two. Kazakhstan’s Leo Higuita has won five of the last six Best Goalkeeper honours, with Brazilian sensation Leonardo claiming the last two Best Young Player prizes.
6.79 goals per game is what the Futsal World Cup has averaged – one every five minutes and 53 seconds. Not bad, eh fans?
Spain participated in an unprecedented five straight finals from 1996 to 2012, winning two of them.
Three nations will maintain the distinction of playing at every FIFA Futsal World Cup this year: Argentina, Brazil and Spain. Another three will make their competition debut: Angola, Lithuania and Venezuela will take the total number of countries to have participated in it to 50. Encouragingly for the trio, Vietnam and Azerbaijan both won their first-ever matches in the tournament in 2016 en route to the knockout phase.
One defeat in their last 54 FIFA Futsal World Cup matches is, incredibly, all Brazil have suffered. A Seleção lost twice – 3-2 to Hungary and 5-3 to USA – en route to glory at the maiden finals in 1989, and their only defeat thereafter was 4-3 to Spain in the 2000 final. Brazil were eliminated on penalties in the 2004 semi-finals and the Round of 16 in 2016.
Egypt haven’t drawn any of their 25 FIFA Futsal World Cup games, despite their goal difference being relatively even: 90 goals for and 101 against.