Friday, August 16, 2013

Homeless World Cup: Scotland remain in contention


Scotland's 2013 Homeless World Cup team still have a chance of third title win as the tournament continues in Poznan.

On Tuesday wins over Argentina and Wales saw the Scots qualify behind Indonesia in Group G, joining 23 other teams in the group stages competing for the main Homeless World Cup trophy.

The Scots moved into Group C alongside last year's champions Chile, Romania, the Netherlands, Namibia and Denmark.

Recovering from an opening 7-4 defeat to Romania, Scotland secured back to back wins yesterday.

A tight game against Namibia was won 8-7 before Denmark were beaten 4-2.

That leaves Scotland with a strong chance of progressing from a very close group although they'll have to negotiate two tough fixtures today against an undefeated Chile team and a Dutch side with their own hopes of qualification.

The top two teams from Group C will qualify for the knockout stage of the Homeless World Cup trophy.

In today's other group games the Netherlands face Namibia, Romania and Chile both tackle Denmark and Romania round things off against Namibia.

While that scheduling might ultimately leave Scotland's fate out of their hands, two wins this afternoon would be a massive step towards qualification.

The knockout stage looks like being typically tough - Brazil, Mexico and Russia are all undefeated heading into the final round of group games.

While the players continue to inspire with their triumphs over adversity, the Homeless World Cup tournament thrives thanks to the tireless work of volunteers.

So a special mention to Mexican referee Antonio Gutierrez. An amateur official, Antonio got a taste of the tournament in Mexico City last year:

"I stayed in touch with the Hary Milas and Iain McGill, referees of Homeless World Cup in Mexico and they invited me to participate again this year. Last year was one of the most gratifying experiences of my life - I was eager to do it all again."

That meant making a sacrifice to pay his way:

"I sold my car to be able to be here, but for me this is the real job, the reason why I worked all the year!"
  • Scotland v Chile, 12.40pm UK time
  • Scotland v Netherlands, 3pm UK time
Watch all the 2013 Homeless World Cup games live on the tournament website

Homeless World Cup 2013 at the Scottish Football Blog