The 11th AMF Futsal Men’s World Cup took place in Belarus on 17-25 April. The tournament returned to Europe from Latin America for the first time in the past 20 years.
Minsk Arena, one of the largest European high-tech sports and cultural complexes, was the main venue of the championship. Minsk Arena hosted:
Playoffs took place at the largest sports venues in five Belarusian cities:
Futsal has been played in Belarus since the 1990s. It is becoming increasingly popular among Belarusian athletes and supporters.
The Belarusian Futsal Federation was founded in 1993. After it joined the European Futsal Association (UEFS), Belarus got the right to participate in the continental competitions. Today Belarus ranks among the world’s best futsal teams.
Belarus has already hosted international futsal tournaments several times. Brest played host to the UEFS Futsal Men's Championship in 2012, and Gomel was the venue of the 2013 European Cup of Champions.
In May 2014 the International Futsal Federation (AMF) made a decision to hold the 2015 AMF Futsal Men’s World Cup in Belarus.
At the signing ceremony of the agreement, AMF President Rolando Alarcon Rios praised the achievements of the Belarusian futsal team and said that Belarus was able to host the championship in accordance with all the international standards.
The modern sports arenas, comfortable hotels, and good traffic networks in Minsk and other Belarusian cities – everything is ready to welcome the participants and guests of the world championship. Besides, over the last years Belarus has hosted large-scale international competitions and has improved its infrastructure.
Belarus was chosen to host the 2015 AMF Futsal Men’s World Cup a few days after the 2014 IIHF World Championship in Minsk that broke the attendance records and was recognized one of the best ice hockey world championships in history in terms of organization.
The list of participants of the world championship in Minsk featureed 16 best national teams from:
The front-runners of the world competition include the reigning champions Colombia (2011), and also Paraguay (1988, 2003, 2007, and silver in 2011), Brazil (1982, 1985), Russia (bronze in 1997, 2000, 2011)…
The official opening ceremony of the world tournament held every four years was held at Minsk Arena on 17 April. The first match was between Belarus and Brazil.
According to the draw, the preliminary round will look like as follows:
Group A – Belarus, Uruguay, Brazil, Australia;
Group B – Paraguay, Belgium, Norway, Morocco;
Group C – Colombia, Czech Republic, Venezuela, Curacao;
Group D – Argentina, Russia, Slovakia, Kyrgyzstan.
Tickets for the games of the 2015 AMF Futsal Men’s World Cup in Belarus were available at the box offices of the sports complexes and from the official ticket operator of the championship (ticketpro.by). One ticket entitled its holder to see two matches from the program of the competition day.
Group A – Br60-110,000
Group B – Br60-210,000
Group C – Br50-90,000
Group D – Br99,000
Active futsal supporters had an opportunity to purchase 5-,11- and 15- game packages with 10-20% discount:
The official mascot of the world championship was a funny hedgehog with a ball and in a sports uniform featuring the colors of the Belarusian flag. It is not by chance that this animal has been chosen for this role. It is wise and quick to react in critical situations. These are the qualities that are vitally important for professional futsal players. The mascot named Vozhyk (Belarusian for hedgehog) is showing his thumb up which means "Everything will be fine!"
The mascot of the 2015 AMF Futsal World Cup had been designed by artist Vitaly Ortyukh who also created bison Volat, the symbol of the 2014 IIHF World Championship in Minsk.
The logo of the futsal championship featured a multicolored figure with a ball representing the participants of the tournament from different countries united by their love for futsal regardless of their nationality.
The Belarusian national futsal team presently ranks in top five in the world.
The team achieved great success in international championships: three times they competed in the quarterfinals of the world tournaments (1997, 2007, 2011), two times became gold winners (2004, 2014) and once bronze winners (2008) of the European championships.
After the win in the 2014 European futsal champions in the final game again Belgium in Prague (2:1), the Belarusian futsal players were honored with the title “Master of Sports of the Republic of Belarus.”
Belarus national futsal team (2015 AMF Futsal Men’s World Cup):
Goalkeepers – Dmitry Kudi, Roman Volosyuk.
Defensemen – Konstantin Tyurin, Alexander Koval, Igor Scherbich.
Forwards – Alexei Nalivaiko, Alexander Golovach, Dmitry Borysiuk, Vasily Zharikov, Vladislav Selyuk, Dmitry Teslyuk, Artem Yakubov.
Head coach – Sergei Safonov.