Beach soccer, also known as beach football or beasal, is a variant of association footballplayed on a beach or some form of sand. The game emphasises skill, agility and shooting at goal.
Whilst association football has been played informally on beaches for many years, the introduction of beach football was an attempt to codify rules for the game. This was done in 1992 by the founders of Beach Soccer Worldwide, a company set up to develop the sport and responsible for the majority of its tournaments to this day. This was a major foundation for what is now known as beach football and what has led to the sport rapidly growing in popularity.
The irregularity of the soft-sand playing surface leads to a totally different style of play than is used in association football, with a greater degree of improvisation. The compact pitch, much smaller than a normal association football pitch, allows players to score from anywhere on the sand, leading to an average of sixty attempts at goal in a single game. With an average of scoring rate of one goal every three or four minutes, around eleven goals are scored in total per game.
Beach Soccer (Beasal) started in Brazil, more precisely at Leme beach, Rio de Janeiro, and has grown to be an international game. The participation of internationally renowned players such as flamboyant Frenchman Eric Cantona, legendary Spanish strikers Michel and Julio Salinas and Brazilian stars such as Romário, Júnior and Zico has helped to expand television coverage to large audiences in over 170 countries worldwide, making Beach Soccer one of the fastest growing professional sports in the world and converting it into a major showcase for international commercial opportunity.
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