From this Thursday to Saturday is the II Footvolley 4×4 World Cup. Presented by SulAmérica, this tournament brings standouts from seven countries together in the sands of Copacabana Beach, right in front of the Copacabana Palace. Favorite to be champion, Brazil will have two teams; one leaded by the four times World Cup winner, Romário, and the other by the star Renato Gaúcho. Brazil is going to fight for this title against the teams from France, Spain, Portugal, Argentina, Italy, Uruguay and last year winner Paraguay. The classifying rounds will be on Thursday and Friday, with six teams playing each day. On Saturday, the semifinals will be disputed along with the final match. The arena is open to everyone from 5pm and it’s free of charge. The games start at 6pm and are broadcast by SporTV.
But the event isn’t made only of Brazilian stars. Defending Paraguay, there is the former Fluminense player Romerito; Aldair, who made history playing for Flamengo and Rome, is on the Italian team; Donato, former Vasco player, leads Spain; heading the Argentinean team, nobody else than Claudio Caniggia, Brazil executioner at 1990 World Cup responsible for the goal that eliminated Brazil from the event.
Caniggia, 44 years old, says to be eager to meet old team members again. “I’ve played with Aldair in Rome. Renato Gaúcho and Romário played at the same period as I… it’ll be nice to see them again after all these years. I played some friendly matches with Donato like three years ago, in Spain, where I live now”.
Friend of Maradona, who made the pass to the fateful goal at the 1990 World Cup, the former player is excited about the footvolley ascension: “20 years ago, I used to play it just for fun. Now, we have a world tournament with various countries, something impossible to imagine some time ago. There were no TVs broadcasting it, nor sponsors.
The Argentinean talks about the sports globalization. “Back then, there were only English players in England. Now, players from all over the world play the Premier League. Thanks to that, countries with no strong sports culture, like Catar and Emirates, can take part in this global scenario, bringing standouts from other places.
SulAmérica presents the Footvolley 4×4 World Cup, sponsored by Redecard, Banco BMG, Sky and Volkswagen, and supported by Dominos, O Globo, Metro Rio, SulAmérica Paradiso Radio and Mix FM. Its realization is an event from Rio de Janeiro’s Footvolley Federation (Futerj) and IMX. The event is approved by the Footvolley International Federation (FIFv). This project was made possible thanks to Federal Government and the Sports Ministry’s Law of Sports Incentive.
TEAMS PLAYING IN THE II FOOTVOLLEY 4X4 WORLD CUP
BRASIL 1: Romário, Leo Tubarão, Anderson, Alexandre and Helinho
BRASIL 2: Renato Gaúcho, Leandro, Fábio, Tatá and Pião
ITALY: Aldair Mazzieri, Montanari, Bernardo and Denny
PORTUGAL: Oceano, Bruno Santos, Marco, Alex Oliveira and Bruno Alexandre
URUGUAY: Tabaré Silva, Christian, Chueco, Seba and Nico
PARAGUAY: Romerito, Quicho, Jesus, Victor and Odi
ARGENTINA: Caniggia, Mariano, Sebastian, Lizandro and Pablo
ESPANHA: Donato, Alex, Nacho, Cabanillias and Jorge
The teams from the II Footvolley 4×4 World Cup will be training in the arena this Thursday, before the start of the event, from 10am to 2pm. The players will be available to talk to the press.