As we head to Durban for the third instalment of the HOLLYWOODBETS COSAFA Beach Soccer Championship from September 25-October 1, it is worth remembering the exploits of Mozambique in claiming the title last year.
They became the second COSAFA champions after Madagascar were the inaugural winners in Seychelles in 2015, the year they also went on to be crowned African title holders.
With Madagascar absent this time round, it was pre-tournament favourites Mozambique who claimed the 2021 title following a 3-1 victory over East African guest nation Tanzania in the final.
The match brought to an end a thrilling competition that was both hugely entertaining but also showcased the incredible skills in the region.
Mozambique took the lead in the decider with a goal from Helio Mahota, but Abdulkadir Tabib equalised for Tanzania.
Rachide Smith netted his fifth goal of the competition to restore the Mozambique advantage, before Julio Manjate added a third with a spectacular bicycle-kick from distance. It was a frenetic final played at a terrific pace with end-to-end action.
The Golden Boot and Player of the Tournament went to Mozambique star Nelson Manuel, who was a worthy winner in having played a huge role in seeing his side to the title.
His teammate Manuel Domingo won the Golden Glove as the best goalkeeper.
In all there were 75 goals scored in the 10 matches at the competition, providing three days of superb action.
COSAFA signed a three-year partnership with the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Government and the City of eThekwini to host several annual tournaments in Durban, including the beach soccer competition.
The agreement runs from August 2021 to December 2023, and provides the COSAFA Cup, COSAFA Women’s Champions League and COSAFA Beach Soccer Championship with certainty over the hosting of the trio of annual events in what are the most uncertain of times.
The three tournaments will be staged in the coastal city each year over that period, making use of the world-class football facilities on offer and the excellent all-round infrastructure in travel, transport, and communications.
|South Africa (Q)||2||1||0||0||1||5||6||-1||3|
|Key: P = Played; W = Won; W+ = Won in extra-time; WP = Won on penalties; GF = Goals For; GA = Goals Against; PTS = Points|
|Three points for a win|
|Two points for a win in extra-time|
|One point for a win via penalty kicks|
Matches Played: 10
Goals scored: 75
Biggest victory: Mozambique 8 Comoros 3 (Group B)
Most goals in a game: 14 – Angola 8 Seychelles 6 (Group A)
6 goals – Nelson Manuel (Mozambique)
5 – Hansel Coeur de Lion (Seychelles), Nduduzo Phakathi (South Africa), Rachide Smith (Mozambique), Abdulkadir Tabib (Tanzania)
4 – Camadjo (Angola), End-Cole (Angola), Salim Madi (Comoros), Stephano Mapunda (Tanzania),
3 – Jaruph Juma (Tanzania), Julio Manjate (Mozambique)
2 – Ali Moussa (Comoros), Minenhle Ndlovu (South Africa), Lorddy Sinon (Seychelles), Paulo (Angola), Colin Tirant (Seychelles)
1 – Mike Ballette (Seychelles), Ramosette Cumbe (Mozambique), Gomes (Angola), Ibrahim Hassani (Tanzania), Xolani Hlela (South Africa), Michel Joubert (Seychelles), Helio Mahota (Mozambique), Yuran Malate (Mozambique), Mamy (Angola), Bachir Mussa (Mozambique), Nuno (Angola), Raul (Angola), Ammar Ali Said (Comoros), Djafar Soilihi (Comoros), Marlon Sophola (Seychelles), Manuel Tivane (Mozambique)
Own goals – Said Asmane (Comoros), Mike Ballette (Seychelles)