Qantas Futsalroos Qualify For AFC Finals

The Qantas Futsalroos have qualified for the AFC Futsal Championship after recording an upset 5-4 victory over highly fancied Korea Republic at the qualifying tournament currently being held in Kuantan, Malaysia.

The Qantas Futsalroos have recorded an upset 5-4 victory over highly fancied Korea Republic at the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Futsal Championship qualifying tournament currently being held in Kuantan, Malaysia.   The Qantas Futsalroos took the lead in the 12th minute when National team debutant Goran Josifovski slotted his shot into the bottom-left corner of the goal from an Adrian Vizzari pass.   Qantas Futsalroos captain Andrew Nolan doubled his teams lead in the 19th minute with a deft back-heel, but Korea Republic scored two quick goals just before half-time to level the score going into the break.   Korea take the lead in the opening minute of the second half, but Lachlan Wright equalised a minute later with a great solo effort.   Adrian Vizzari gave the Qantas Futsalroos the lead again in the 34th minute after he latched onto an Andrew Nolan pass following some good build-up play. In the 38th minute Goran Josifovski scored his second, and put the game beyond doubt,  with a screaming shot into the roof of the net.    Korea Republic rallied late and pegged another goal back from a 10 metre penalty in the 40th minute, but from the restart the Qantas Futsalroos defence held firm under a torrent of pressure and the score line remained unchanged up to the final whistle.   The win puts the Qantas Futsalroos at the top of pool B and guarantees them a place at the AFC Futsal Championship which will be held in Uzbekistan next month. Not even an unlikely loss to bottom side Macau in tomorrow-s final game, will see Australia miss out, with one team of either Korea Republic or Hong Kong to join the Qantas Futsalroos in Uzbekistan.   "We went into the tournament as underdogs, but tonight we proved that we deserved to go to Uzbekistan after beating the higher ranked teams from Hong Kong and Korea Republic," said Qantas Futsalroos coach, Scott Gilligan   "The boys dug deep against the Koreans and produced one of the best performances that I have ever seen by an Australian Men's Futsal team."   "We are now looking to complete a clean sweep, which was our goal for the tournament, by beating Macau tomorrow. Another good performance in that match will also help us in our preparations for Uzbekistan in May."   Match Details 

Australia  5 (Goran Josifovski 12'/38', Andrew Nolan 19', Lachlan Wright 22', Adrian Vizzari 34' ) Korea Republic 4 (Lee Sang Keun 20'/21', Song Ho Young 20'/40')   Australia starting five: Gavin O-Brien (gk), Scott Manson, Miles Downie, Andrew Nolan (c), Lachlan Wright. Substitutes: Goran Josifovski, Christopher Zeballos, Adrian Vizzari,  Andrew Paine, Trent Flanigan, Luke Haydon Subs not used: Peter Spathis (gk) Not in line-up: Keenan Duimpies,  Elia Salloum  

AFC Futsal Championship Qualifying tournament 

Pool B - Results & Fixtures   Round 1 - 20 April 2006 Qantas Futsalroos 3 - Hong Kong 2 Korea Republic 8 - Macau 1   Round 2 - 21 April 2006 Qantas Futsalroos 5 - Korea Republic 4 Hong Kong 14 - Macau 2   Round 3 - 22 April 2006 Qantas Futsalroos v Macau Korea Republic v Hong Kong   Group B - Points Table Team                       P    Pts 1. Australia             2    6 (+2) 2. Hong Kong          2    3 (+11) 3. Korea Republic    2    3 (+6) 4. Macau                2    0 (-20)