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Hotshots Javid, Pepita set for showdown

Thursday, August 15, 2019
Pepita v Mahdi Javid (2)

Bangkok: Mes Sungun Varzeqan and Nagoya Oceans will be counting on their respective hotshots - Mahdi Javid and Pepita - when they face off in the final of the AFC Futsal Club Championship Thailand 2019 at the Bangkok Arena on Saturday.

Javid and Pepita have played pivotal roles in their respective teams qualifying for the final with both having scored seven goals.

Besides the coveted title, the top scorer award will also be at stake on the final day of the tournament - setting the stage for a showdown between two of the Continental club championship’s most potent strikers.

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While Brazilian Pepita has been in good form since the start of the tournament, Javid has peaked at the right time for defending champions Mes Sungun.

Javid scored a hat-trick in the Islamic Republic of Iran’s club’s 7-3 win over AGMK FC in Thursday’s semi-final, showing the form that won him the Most Valuable Player award in the AFC Futsal Club Championship 2018.

Pepita’s consistency has been valuable for three-time champions Oceans, with the 30-year-old scoring the extra-time winner when the Japanese club defeated Mes Sungun in the group stage.

Pepita, however, said his focus will not be on individual glory in what promises to be a thrilling final.

“I’m not sure if I can win the top scorer award. The most important thing is to win the final. Getting the award is a consequence of the match, so my focus is on defeating Mes Sungun, said Pepita.

“Javid (Mahdi) is an excellent futsal player. He is physically strong and is a good finisher.”

The duo, however, are not the only players in the running for the top scorer award as Kazuya Shimizu of Thai Son Nam is also on seven goals.

He has a chance to add to his tally as the Vietnam club will face Uzbekistan’s AGMK FC in the third-place playoff on Saturday.

Mes Sungun captain Farhad Fakhim, Thai Son Nam’s Tran Thai Huy and AGMK’s Davron Choriev and Akbar Usmonov - who are all on five goals - are also in the running for the top scorer award.

Photos: AFC

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