VIVA World Cup: Padania triumph for the third time

Padania retained the VIVA World Cup title thanks to a narrow win over Kurdistan in a repetition of the final of the last edition. As expected, the match was hotly-contested as the two sides arrived in fine form for the final match.

The two sides created some good scoring opportunities and the final score remained uncertain until the final whistle. Kurdistan probably were punished for some erratic finishing, something which was consistent throughout the tournament. On the other hand, Padania adopted a more cautious approach and the success was mainly attributed through the solidity of the defensive department and the determination expressed on the field to defend the title.

The northern Italians went close to scoring after just five minutes of play but Kurdistan’s goalkeeper Dydar Hamed blocked well an effort by Andrea Casse. On 13 minutes, the same Casse incredibly failed to connect off an inviting cross from the right flank. Kurdistan replied on 17 minutes through a cross-shot by Hardee Nooruldeen that almost surprised goalie Mattia Pedersoli. Two minutes later, a shot by Qaraman ended high.

Kurdistan maintained pressure over their opponents and on 21 minutes a strike by Qaraman following a free kick was blocked by the rearguard and from the resultant melee a header by Ayoob Ayad was well saved by the goalkeeper. From the rebound the ball arrived to Deyar Rahman but goalie Pedersoli recovered his position and saved the danger.

Padania managed to score the goal that decided the final on 24 minutes through an excellent shot by Luca Mosti which surprised the goalkeeper.

In the following minutes, Kurdistan protested for two alleged handling infringements in Padania’s area and on 37 minutes the northern Italians were again dangerous through a low cross by Casse that passed in front of an open goal.

Kurdistan increased their efforts in an attempt to recover the deficit but Padania’s rearguard was well deployed. On 57 minutes, Kurdistan were dangerous through a shot from outside the area by Burhar Abdulkarim that was blocked in corner and on 66 minutes a header by Ayoob Ayad hit the side of the net.

Kurdistan protested with the officials of the match ten minutes later when a goal by Ayad was disallowed for an offside infringement. Kurdistan’s last opportunity to save the result arrived two minutes from time but goalie Pedersoli saved well an overhead kick by Qaraman.

After the final whistle all the Padania players, officials and supporters released their pressure of the match and started the celebrations for winning the third consecutive VIVA World Cup title.

PADANIA M. Pedersoli, E. Pedersoli, S. Beronchelli, S. Tignonsini, F. Calandrelli, A.G. Motta, L. Mosti, V. Chiarotto, A. Casse, M.S. Nannini, M. Prandelli.
KURDISTAN D. Hamed, M. Hamakhan, A. Schakor, H. Seyamand, A. Ayad, A. Qaraman, B. Abdulkarim, D. Rahman, F. Haidar, A. Aziz, H. Nooruldeen.
Referee: Mario Mazzoleni (Italy)
Asst. Referees: 1st Luciano Casnati (Italy), 2nd Azhad Hatim Karim (Kurdistan)
4th Official: Joe Bajada (Gozo)
Scorers: L. Mosti 24’


A goal scored two minutes before the half hour of play and a second goal scored deep into stoppage time gave Occitania a deserved win over debutants Regno Delle Due Sicilie in the final for the third place.

The two teams had to recover their physical and psychological condition following the disappointing results in their respective matches of the semi-finals. Occitania seemed a more experienced side. They capitalized from the goal scored during the first period and controlled play with authority after the break and made sure of the prestigious placing with a second goal scoring in the dying moments. The victory could have been with a larger margin but Occitania lost some good scoring opportunities throughout the ninety minutes of play. Regno delle Due Sicilie lacked motivation and were weak in attack. The southern Italians seemed demoralized and had their best scoring opportunities from set-pieces.

In the 8th minute of play, Occitania went close through a good shot by Julien Cantier that just missed the target. Five minutes later, Regno Delle Due Sicilie’s goalkeeper Donato Fiorenzano went out of the area to clear danger before Nicolas Cayetano could conclude off a long-through ball. Occitania continued to create more danger and on 16 minutes a cross by Cantier arrived to Sebastien Taillan who saw his header cleared off the goalmouth by defender Giovanni Baghara. Regno Delle Due Sicilie replied on 20 minutes with a free kick by Pietro Cappuccilli that ended over the crossbar.

Occitania scored the goal that decided the encounter on 28 minutes. Sebastien Taillan escaped the defense following a long through pass and netted with a low angled shot from the edge of the area.

On 34 minutes, Regno Delle Sicilie could have leveled the score. A cross from the right flank by Danilo Macari arrived to Pietro Cappuccili but the latter’s half volley was saved with difficulty by goalie Remy Veziat.

Occitania became more dangerous with fast break during the second period and on 56 minutes, Taillan entered the area with a solo action after dribbling the last defender but his low shot shaved the post. On 66 minutes, goalie Fiorenzano cleared a dangerous situation following an attempt by Taillan and six minutes later substitute Eric Gamet was denied from doubling the score with another good intervention by the goalkeeper.

Regno delle Due Sicilie were again dangerous on 73 minutes through a direct free kick by the usual Pietro Cappuccili but goalie Remy Veziat cleared the danger with a fine save. One minute later, a lob by Occitania’s Nicolas Cayetano hit the crossbar and minutes later it was Gamet who had an angled shot that ended on the side of the net. In the 81st minute, a shot by Boris Massare hit the post and one minute later a volley by Eric Gamet following a corner action ended just high. Regno delle Due Sicilie’s goalkeeper Fiorenzano made a good save in the second minute of stoppage time following an effort by Nicolas Cayetano.

Occitania doubled the score and made sure of the victory with a goal scored by Eric Gamet in the third minute of stoppage time who concluded a fast break by Boris Massare.

REGNO DELLE DUE SICILIE D. Fiorenzano, G. Baghara, A. Paracolli, F. Maresca (A. Valerio), A. De Luca (A. Bonavolonta), D. Macari (B. Rea), V. Basso, E. Velardi, F. Balestra, P. Cappuccilli, E. Lepre.
OCCITANIA R. Veziat, A. Bachmann, R. Danyach (G. Soro), K. Foussereau, C. Mouysset, N. Cayetano, B. Massare, J. Cantier, B. Bastier, S. Taillan (G. Hernandez), N. Desachy (E. Gamet).
Referee: Luciano Casnati (Italy)
Asst. Referees: 1st Vincent Cassar (Gozo), 2nd Lawrence Azzopardi (Malta)
4th Official: Gheorghi Radu (Romania)
Scorers: S. Taillan 28’, E. Gamet 90+3’


Padania registered another convincing victory over Gozo in the second leg of the Women’s competition of the VIVA World Cup 2010 and were crowned champions with a 7-0 aggregate. Padania were aggressive during the first period and practically were sure of the victory with two goals scored during the opening forty-five minutes.

In this match, the Gozitans found it difficult to keep with Padania’s rhythm and as a result failed to score at least one goal in the two legs of the competition.

Padania could have scored in the second minute of play but Martina Bartoni concluded wide when she was put through in Gozo’s area. However, the northern Italians opened the score on 10 minutes. A cross by Francesca Lardo arrived to an unmarked Valentina Povia and the latter netted with a good shot.

On 27 minutes a free kick by Monica Iustione ended inches wide from Gozo’s goal and eight minutes later, Povia could have easily increased the score but the striker chose to shoot the ball out of the pitch as a Gozitan defender was injured on the floor.

However, Padania doubled the score five minutes from the break with another goal by Povia who concluded a solo action.

Gozo continued to find it difficult to produce a reaction after the break and Gozo’s goalkeeper Fabianne Vella was called to make two difficult saves during the early stages following attempts by substitute Valentina Colamonaco and Valentina Povia. On 63 minutes, Povia released Colamonaco in a fine move on the flank but the latter concluded incredibly wide after dribbling the goalkeeper. Three minutes later Gozo’s goalkeeper went out of the area to clear the danger but the ball arrived to Povia who concluded incredibly wide.

Padania made it 3-0 on 78 minutes through a direct free kick by Monica Iustioni that surprised the Gozitan goalkeeper.

Gozo went closest to score a goal on 90 minutes when Stephania Farrugia unmarked Sarah Sultana in the area but the latter saw her attempt saved in corner.

PADANIA V. Paghliassotto, G. Nespoli, F.V. Lardo, S. Panzini, L. Laterza, E. Rancati, M. Bartoni, L. Galvan, C. Busi, M. Iustoni, V. Povia.
GOZO F. Vella, R. Chircop, S. Farrugia, R. Azzopardi, M. Zuber, F. Mercieca, K. Attard, S. Sultana, M. Bajada, J. Xerri, S. Xuereb.
Referee: Joe Bajada (Gozo)
Asst. Referees: 1st Eucharist Portelli (Gozo), 2nd Gheorghie Radu (Romania)
Fourth Official: Claudio Guida (Italy)
Scorers: V. Povia 10’, 40’; M. Iustoni 78’

Match reports and photos courtesy of Joe Bajada