Barça stop Kielce’s MOTW comeback in style
Barça have overcome a big hurdle and keep their clear record in the Machineseeker EHF Champions League. After winning a tough away match at Szeged last week, the defending champions won the MOTW in the duel of the 2022 finalists against Lomza Industria Kielce, 32:28.
The hosts were shaken a bit in the middle of the second half after a clear advantage at the break, but as at Szeged the French internationals Ludovic Fabregas – awarded Player of the Match as top scorer with six goals – and Dika Mem secured the win alongside goalkeeper Emil Nielsen.
Kielce’s top scorer was Arkadiusz Moryto, also with six strikes. The Polish champions remain on two points.
MOTW: Barça (ESP) vs. Lomza Industria Kielce (POL) 32:28 (18:13)
- Barça’s new arrival Emil Nielsen imprinted the first 40 minutes with an impressive number of 13 saves. The Dane, who transferred from Nantes this summer, stood like a wall and was quite surprisingly chosen as number 1 goalkeeper, not team captain Gonzalo Perez de Vargas
- scoring a 4:0 run in the final six minutes of the first half, Barça took a quite comfortable 18:13 advance to the locker room
- Kielce occasionally had enormous problems in attack, but, boosted by Alex Dujshebaev, improved after the break to reduce the gap to only 20:21 - but then missed four chances to level the result for the first time since 10:10
- when goalkeeper Andreas Wolff started his engines, Kielce’s defence stood stronger, but now they again had problems in finding the gaps in Barça’s defence
- Hampus Wanne’s strike for 30:26 finally decided the encounter in the 58th minute
- the final outcome of the eight French national team players was quite different: Ludovic Fabregas (six), Dika Mem (five), Timothy N’Guessan and Melvyn Richardson (four each) combined 19 goals for Barça, while Nedim Remili, Dylan Nahi (one each), Nicolas Tournat (zero) and Benoit Konkoud (two goals) did not have that much impact for Kielce
Ortega wins the coaches’ duel again
If two coaches combine 12 trophies, they are definitely a special part of the 30 years of history in the EHF Champions League.
Carlos Ortega won six titles as a player and one as a coach with Barça, Talant Dujshebaev won the trophy as a player for Santander, and as a coach of Ciudad Real (three times) and Kielce.
In the first two duels of the previous season, Dujshebaev took both victories, before Ortega, who took over from Xavi Pascual in summer 2021, struck back in the final. Now the result of the giant’s duels is 2:2 – but for sure, Dujshebaev will try everything to take revenge in the re-match in Kielce.