Cupara shines as Veszprém grab a point
With five minutes left, hosts THW Kiel were on the way to recording a win in their 21st EHF Champions League duel against Telekom Veszprém, but the visitors avoided their first defeat of the season and stay on top of the table with nine points from five matches.
After goals galore in the first half, the second half was highlighted by strong defences and two impressive goalkeepers.
MOTW: THW Kiel (GER) vs Telekom Veszprém HC (HUN) 31:31 (18:20)
- In 20 preview duels, Kiel and Veszprém had taken each 10 victories - this was the first ever draw.
- After winning 11 of their last 12 Champions League matches, Veszprém drew against the same team, which had caused their only intermediate defeat, Kiel (29:28 in January).
- Sander Sagosen scored eight of his nine goals in the first half.
- 38 goals in the first half was the highest first half score in the 2020/21 season, beating the 37 goals between Barça vs Zagreb (24:13)
- Niklas Landin recorded 11 saves and Player of the Match Vladimir Cupara saved 17 shots, 10 of them after the break.
- Yahia Khaled Fathy Omar (Veszprém) and Sander Sagosen (Kiel) missed the last shot for each side inside the last 20 seconds
Mighty Cupara makes Veszprém forget Corrales
Looking at the first matches of the season, and mainly the SEHA League’s final tournament in September, one Veszprém player was simply outstanding: goalkeeper Rodrigo Corrales. But the Spaniard could not travel to Kiel because of quarantine. And what happened? Serbian Vladimir Cupara saved impressively, mainly in the second half, and he was the reason why Veszprém remained in the contest and emerged with a point.
This match was on the highest level. When I entered the locker room, my players were a bit sad because they did not score in the last five minutes. But we have played very well. It was a good match for the spectators.