A Liga Europeia de Futebol de Praia 2011 está prestes a começar, com a primeira etapa a ter lugar em Berna, capital suíça, entre os dias 27 e 29 de Maio. São dois torneios, um referente à divisão A e o outro relativo à divisão B, disputados pela primeira vez em areias helvéticas, que marcam o início da temporada de Vero, mais concretamente da Liga Europeia, a principal competição do futebol de praia europeu.
Em vésperas de competição e desejando recolher impressões junto dos principais intervenientes, o BEACH SOCCER RESTELO estabeleceu contacto com Simone Del Mestre, guarda-redes da selecção italiana de futebol de praia, que vai jogar esta primeira etapa da EBSL 2011 e colecciona um conjunto de eperiências interessantes que merecem um destaque neste blogue.
Agradecemos desde já ao Simone Del Mestre por nos ter concedido esta entrevista e desejamos-lhe boa sorte para este primeiro desafio da temporada a nível de selecções, no qual a Itália terá pela frente as equipas da Espanha, da Suíça e da Turquia.
BEACH SOCCER RESTELO: In a couple of years you managed to reach a great status in the Italian National team, being frequently named as one of the best goalkeepers in Europe. How did that all happen? How did it started and how did you get that level?
Simone Del Mestre: I started playing beach soccer 4 summers ago, as the third goalkeeper of Coil Lignano Sabbiadoro that year, and I found myself in the national team… My first two international appearances were against France and Portugal and it went very well… From those matches over, I’ve been invited to all events so far…
BEACH SOCCER RESTELO: Last March you played for Boca Juniors in the I Clubs Beach Soccer Mundialito, in São Paulo, Brazil. Although your team was eliminated in the group phase, failing to win a single match, you proved to be in a good physical shape, displaying some outstanding performances during the matches. How can you describe that new experience and the whole environment related to the competition?
Simone Del Mestre: When I was contacted by Boca I was very surprised and speechless… For me it was an honour to wear the colours of a so prestigious club! I played against Milan and Vasco and those were perhaps my two best games since I am on the sand. Unfortunately, the penalties are a lottery and there it went wrong… The FIFA Club World Cup was definitely a great experience to deal with the best in the world beachers.
BEACH SOCCER RESTELO: The European season is about to start, with the first EBSL tournament taking place in Bern, Switzerland, next weekend. Italy will battle for division A points, playing against Turkey, Spain and hosts Switzerland. What are your expectations for the tournament and the teams? And what about the Euro League in general?
Simone Del Mestre: We are preparing in the best way possible to do it well on this first leg in Switzerland, where we will play against Spain, Turkey and Switzerland. Spain and Switzerland are not surprises at all, they are two very good teams but we are not less. Turkey was promoted last year and we have already played against them by the World Cup qualifiers in Bibione: we should not underestimate them. Regarding the European League, well, our aim will be to improve the placement of last year… and last year we came second!