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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 Romario, 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.

Beach Soccer had been played recreationally all over the world for many years and in many different formats. In 1992 the laws of the game were envisioned and a pilot event was staged by the founding partners of BSWW in Los Angeles. By 1993, the first professional beach soccer competition was organized at Miami Beach, with teams from the United States, Brazil, Argentina and Italy taking part.

WHEN IT BEGAN TO GROW

In April 1994 the first event to be covered by network television transmissions was held on Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro and the city hosted the first Beach Soccer World Championship in 1995. The competition was won by the host nation, making Brazil the first ever World Champions of Beach Soccer. The success of the tournament saw commercial interest begin to match developments on the pitch and growing demand for the sport around the world gave rise to the Pro Beach Soccer Tour in 1996.

The first Pro Beach Soccer Tour included a total of 60 games in two years across South America, Europe, Asia and the United States, attracting major names both on and off the pitch. Interest generated by the tour in Europe led to the creation of the European Pro Beach Soccer League in 1998, providing a solid infrastructure that would increase the professionalism of the spectacle on all levels. The EPBSL, now known as the Euro BS League, brought promoters together from across the continent and satisfied the demands of the media, sponsors and fans. Only four years on from its creation, the successful first step in the building of a legitimate Worldwide Competition Structure for the sport of Pro Beach Soccer had been taken.

RULES

Players: Each team consists of five players, including the goalkeeper and an unlimited amount of substitutions, from a selection of 3 to 5 players. Throw-ins and kick-ins mean the pace and flow of the game is much higher than regular football. Shoes are not allowed, although ankle guards are permitted. Goal kicks are taken by the goalie using his hands to throw the ball.

Match Length: A game lasts thirty-six minutes, and is split up into three twelve-minute periods. Every beach soccer match is won by one team, with the game going into three minutes of extra time, followed by a penalty shootout if the score is still on level terms after normal time. Unlike association football, penalty kicks are decided by sudden death rules.

Officiating: Three referees officiate the match. Two on the pitch and one off, controlling the teams' benches. Any fouls committed lead to a free kick on goal, which has to be taken by the player who was fouled, unless awarded for deliberate handling. As in Association football, yellow and red cards can be issued. However unlike in the main game, when a player receives a yellow card he must leave the pitch for two minutes and the team must play with four players for that duration of time. When a player receives a red card, he is dismissed from the game entirely – unlike in 11-a-side football, the team can bring on a substitute to replace the dismissed player after two minutes.

The Pitch:
A beach soccer pitch is considerably smaller than a regular football pitch. In international competition, the pitch is composed entirely of sand and is cleared of pebbles and seashells, along with any other objects which could injure a player.

The pitch is rectangular in shape, and the touch line is longer than the goal line.

The pitch dimensions are:

Length (35-37m | 38.2-40.4 yds)
Width (26-28m | 28.4-30.6 yds)

The penalty area is within 9 m (9.8 yds) of the goals, and is marked by a yellow flag situated in touch. Two red flags opposite each other are at the centre of the pitch to represent the half-way line.

 
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