International Competitions - September 18, 2021 09:00What do teams require to reach the knockout phase? reportPhoto and report courtesy:

18 Sept 2021

-Nine of 16 knockout-phase spots have been seized
-Four points will guarantee progression
-Two points could even be enough

Two of the three matchdays in the group stage of the FIFA Futsal World Cup Lithuania 2021™ have already been completed, with 24 games having been played. The main question ahead of the final, decisive matchday is who will qualify for the knockout phase and which teams will be heading home? has reviewed all the possible scenarios in the various groups and drawn up a list of who is already through to the Round of 16 and which teams still have hopes of qualifying – or fears of being knocked out. Time to get the calculators out...

Group A

Already qualified: Kazakhstan and Venezuela.
In the balance: Costa Rica and Lithuania.
How things stand: Costa Rica and Lithuania face one another on the final matchday. Both are yet to pick up a point and therefore need a win to stand a chance of reaching the last 16.

Group B

Already qualified: RFU.
In the balance: Egypt, Guatemala and Uzbekistan.
How things stand: If Guatemala can pick up a point against RFU, they will book their spot in the Round of 16. A defeat would leave them looking at results from the other groups. Only a win would be enough for Uzbekistan against Egypt if they are to remain in the tournament, but for Egypt, a draw will see them into the last 16 – and they may still progress even if they lose.

Group C

Already qualified: Morocco and Portugal.
In the balance: Solomon Islands and Thailand.
How things stand: Solomon Islands are yet to open their account while Thailand are just ahead of them on one point. The two teams face off in the final match, so if Thailand win, they go through. A draw would see them reliant on other results, while victory is the only way that Solomon Islands would still have a chance of progressing.

Group D

Already qualified: Brazil.
In the balance: Panama, Czech Republic, Vietnam.
How things stand: Czech Republic and Vietnam play one another on the final matchday and a draw would give them each four points and see them safely into the knockout phase. If either were to lose, they would still have a chance of qualifying. Panama, on the other hand, require a win against Brazil, and even then would only be on three points and by no means guaranteed to make it through to the Round of 16.

Group E

Already qualified: Spain.
In the balance: Angola, Japan and Paraguay.
How things stand: Japan and Paraguay face off in the last fixture knowing that a draw would see them both through to the knockout stage with four points each. For Angola, only a win against Spain will do, putting them on three points and leaving them looking anxiously at the other groups to see whether they are among the four best third-placed teams.

Group F

Already qualified: Argentina and IR Iran.
In the balance: Serbia and USA.
How things stand: USA and Serbia are both on zero points and face one another in a winner-takes-all final match. Whoever wins would at least stand a chance of reaching the Round of 16.

What the rules say…

If you want to know exactly what it will take for your team to get through to the next round, take a look at the tournament regulations and work out the various scenarios. Have fun, and may the best teams win!

Posted by Luca Ranocchiari -->
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