The HOLLYWOODBETS COSAFA Beach Soccer Championship will be staged in Durban from September 25-October 1, where Mozambique will defend their title.
We round up the numbers on what is a relatively new fixture on the COSAFA calendar.
0 – There is no offside rule in beach soccer.
1 – Madagascar are the only previous African champions from the COSAFA region as they lifted the Beach Soccer Africa Cup of Nations in 2015. Mozambique made the final in 2021 but lost 4-1 to Senegal.
2 – There have been two previous winners of the COSAFA Beach Soccer Championship. Madagascar claimed the inaugural title in 2015 and Mozambique were champions in 2021.
2 – The teams in Durban are split into two pools each containing four teams. The top two sides in each pool advance to the semifinals.
2- Beach soccer has two referees on the pitch during the game and both can make decisions.
3 – Teams get three points for an outright win in the group stages. However, if their win is only achieved in over-time, they get two points. If the win is achieved via penalty-kicks, then they receive one point. There has to be a winner with no draws in beach soccer.
3 – Three teams from COSAFA have competed at the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup. South Africa (2005), Madagascar (2015) and Mozambique (2021) all exited in the first round.
5 – In beach soccer, each team can have five players on the sand at any given time. There are also seven subs on the bench and no limit as to how many subs can be used. Subs can come on and off while the ball is in play.
5.5 – The goals in beach soccer are 5.5 metres wide and 2.2 metres high.
6 – Mozambique’s Nelson Manuel was the leading scorer in the 2021 COSAFA Beach Soccer Championship with six goals.
6 – Six teams took part in the 2021 COSAFA Beach Soccer Championship. Only Mozambique, South Africa and Seychelles are returning this year.
8 – The number of participating teams in Durban, namely Egypt, Mauritius, Mozambique, Senegal, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda.
11 – This year will be the 11th Beach Soccer Africa Cup of Nations with more than half having been hosted in the COSAFA region. South Africa has hosted four times (2006-2009), Seychelles once (2015) and Mozambique will host for the first time in 2022.
14 – The most goals in a single game at the 2021 COSAFA Beach Soccer Championships was 14 as Angola defeated Seychelles 8-6!
36 – A match is split into three 12-minute periods, meaning the total length of a game is 36 minutes. The clock does stop when the ball is out of play, which makes games in reality quite a bit longer. There is a three-minute break between each period.
75 – There were 75 goals scored in 10 matches in the 2021 COSAFA Beach Soccer Championship.