By Nick Wright, Assistant Press & Publicity Officer, Sheffield FC Futsal
There was plenty at stake and expectations were high on Sunday 8 January as the reds and blues faced up to each other in what turned out to be a thrilling contest between two rivals.
Oh, and coincidently there was a Manchester derby in the FA Cup that day too.
The Futsal players of Sheffield not-only matched their red counterparts from across the Pennines by claiming a much-needed victory but outscored them by a whopping ten goals- recording a 13-2 victory.
The fixture got me thinking about the similarities and differences between Futsal and the slightly more glamorous, immeasurably wealthier and higher echelons of the beautiful game.
I think similarities can be drawn between the two games- honestly.
First and foremost Manchester United welcomed back Paul Scholes to pull the strings in midfield and pick out passes that could open up the blues defence. This kind of quarterback play was in evidence as Sheffield patiently picked apart East Coast with great passes from deep, albeit without welcoming back any old icons in order to do so, as is the trend right now.
However, the are also stark differences between the magic of the FA Cup, the big bucks of the Premiership and football’s up and coming but still slightly attention starved younger relation.
As mentioned Futsal does provide you with more goal action, which I’m sure would appeal to the plethora of American owners who look for their football purchases to provide more of the kind of baseball or basketball style action. It may also sound more appealing than visiting Valley Parade
Of course, at this time of year, Futsal also has the distinct advantage of being indoors, but that’s largely by the by.or Don Valley to ‘enjoy’ a mid-January nil-nil shut out.
There are other differences which suggest that Futsal still has a little way to go towards emulating the greatest aspects of association Football.
I mean, I doubt that even the lowliest FA Cup tie of the weekend was delayed due to a saga with an electric scoreboard and whether or not it could be proven to be safe to plug into the mains.
But Futsal does provide the buzz, excitement and skill that we all love to see from the beautiful game, and if you fancy seeing all of these in abundance (and indoors) then you should come along to the Concord Sports Centre in Sheffield at 2.30pm on Sunday 5 February and watch what should be a cracking game between Sheffield FC Futsal and Liverpool.