In the UEFA Cup-17/18 takes part 56 of clubs, which is a record (this season was declared the best club in Northern Ireland). The preliminary round was held in August, according to the results of the 32 teams passed eight.
In this season's Euro tournament takes place at the new formula. First, the first four associations with the highest rating (Russia, Spain, Portugal and Italy) stated at the tournament in two clubs, but no one got an automatic pass to the elite round. And secondly, the main round was expanded from 24 to 32 teams and began to apply the rule of "path A and b".
"Paths And" 16 teams, including the defending champion (Spanish inter) and teams from 1st to 11th place ("nickers") and from 16 th to 19-th place in the UEFA rankings. The teams are divided into four quartets, where in the elite round out the top three. "Paths" — also 4 groups of 4 players, but only the winners go on. In the elite round, as before, 16 teams (the draw will take place on October 19, matches — at the end of November).
Last season "nickers" has successfully passed the first round (three wins), and in the elite for the first time in history took 3 points (a victory over the champion of Kosovo) and took third place in the group. Before the residents played in the elite round in the season-12/13.
In the spring of this year the Riga club tenth time in a row became the champion of Latvia (in the finals won the series with countrymen of the SLAVE - 3-1) and again is a country in Europe, and, as before, without additional selection earned the right to play directly in the main round of the UEFA Cup. Before the draw the Netherlands had held the record for the Latvian clubs eighth place in the European rankings and tournament participants.
The new season of "nickers" started with the conquest of the trophy in September in the match for the Supercup of Latvia has been beaten TFK rēzekne (4:2). And in the first round of the League (October 7) "nicorovici" defeated "Monarch" (8:0). To Serbia for the UEFA Cup ten-fold champion of Latvia went without one of the most experienced players Dmitry Zabarovskis, but with two Brazilians is 33-year-old Adipurana and 25-year-old Rodrigo, who joined the team later than the others.
The first contender "Nickers" in the new Eurocup series was a multiple champion Serbian "Ekonomac" (7th in FIFA ranking), which in previous years paths have crossed. In the starting level of the residents came Alekseev (captain), Canopy and both legionary and gate shashilal of Astrakhan. And in a shock four "Economica" played for three Brazilian and Ukrainian Sorokin.
In the first half, the score was not opened, since the beginning of the second half it took 67 seconds when the hosts scored a goal: its author was Brazilian tales. Champion of Latvia bounced back after 4 minutes — equalized Brazilian Rodrigo. If in the first half Futsal players "Nickers" committed only three fouls, by the 39th minute of the second half have exhausted their limit.
Draw 1:1 stayed almost until the end of the match, although it is possible to hold a second ball from the "Economica". In the "frame" of the residents worked Astrakhan, and four times to his rescue came the woodwork. At the end of the match the hosts attacked a lot and achieved his goal four seconds before the siren! Brazilian Salotti with transfer Tales brought "Economato" victory — 2:1. Time to recoup, "Nikara".
In the second round, October 12, champion of Latvia will play against Ukrainian "Kherson", which in the first round lost to group favourites Portuguese "sporting" (1:5). Match "nickers" — "sporting" will be held October 14.
The main round of the UEFA Cup
Group 3. The first round
Ekonomac (Serbia) — Nikars (Latvia) 2:1 (0:0)
Goals: Tales 22, Salotti 40 — Rodrigo 26.
Ekonomac: Momcilovic, Igor — Dmitry Sorokin — Tales — Salotti, Matijević, Ramić, Rnić, Pršić, Lazarevic, S. Ivankovic, Borisov, Raicevic.
Nickers: Astrakhan, Sen — Alekseev — Adipose — Rodrigo, And Y. Pastors, Arkhipov-Prokofiev, Ixtens, Erofeev, Avanesov, Sergeev, Matyushenko, Cormorants.
Warning: Extens 40.
Shots (on target): 54 (22) — 14 (5)
Saves: 4 — 21
Sporting (Portugal) — Kherson (Ukraine) 5:1 (3:0)
Goals: Pedro Brown 5, Fortino 13, 20, Cavinato 21, 22 Wolanyk 39.
19.00 (Latvian) nickers — sporting
21.30 Ekonomac — Kherson
19.00 Kherson — Nickers
21.30 Sporting — Ekonomac
Photos FK Nikars FC