The United States lost to Paraguay, 9-4, Monday in Moscow in its third and final game in the 2021 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup, with former Santa Monica High and Santa Monica College standout Alessandro Canale scoring twice.
The U.S. entered the game with the opportunity to advance to the quarterfinals with a victory, a loss by Football Union of Russia to Japan later Monday and finishing with a better goal differential.
The U.S. entered Monday’s play with a minus-two goal differential while the Football Union of Russia had a plus-one differential.
Canale cut Paraguay’s lead to 3-2 with a goal in the 15th minute, but Paraguay scored five unanswered goals. Canale scored his second goal in the 34th minute of the 36-minute game.
The U.S. (0-3) also got goals from Gabriel Silveira in the third minute and Nicolas Perea on a 33rd-minute penalty kick at Luzhniki Beach Soccer Stadium.
Pedro Moran scored three goals and Carlos Carballo two for Paraguay (1-2), whose hopes of advancing to the quarterfinals ended when Football Union of Russia defeated Japan, 7-1, to win Group A.
As Group A runner-up Japan also advanced to the quarterfinals.
The top two teams in each of the four, four-team groups advanced to the quarterfinals.
Canale was the leading U.S. scorer in the tournament with five of its 11 goals.
Canale was a first-team All-Ocean League selection during the 2007-08 season as he helped the Vikings win the Southern Section Division IV and CIF Southern Regional championships.
Canale was Santa Monica College’s Offensive Player of the Year in 2012 when he scored 24 goals and had eight assists.
Beach soccer is played on a rectangular field 35-37 meters long and 26-28 meters wide. The game is played on a level sandy area that is cleared of pebbles and seashells along with any other objects which could injure a player.
Each team consists of five players, including the goalkeeper. Players must play in bare feet, although ankle guards are permitted. The game consists of three 12-minute periods.
Unlike conventional soccer, a game cannot end in a tie. If the score is tied at the end of regulation a three-minute overtime is played. If the score remains tied a penalty kick shootout is conducted.
This is the 11th FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup and 21st world championship for beach soccer. Before FIFA took over organization of the competition in 2005, it ran annually as the Beach Soccer World Championships from 1995-2004. In 2009, FIFA switched the tournament from annual to biennial.
The U.S. was also eliminated in the group stage of the 2019 tournament after failing to qualify for the 2015 and 2017 tournaments.
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