Dinamo dramatically snatch first away win

MAL7445 V EHF / Björn Pazen

With 90 seconds to play, HC PPD Zagreb seemed to be on the path to victory in their crucial duel against C.S Dinamo Bucuresti – but the Romanian champions jumped for joy after scoring the last two goals to claim a 29:28 victory in a true thriller. 

The final score was Dinamo Bucuresti's one and only lead in the whole match. With five points on their account before the break in the Machineseeker EHF Champions League, Dinamo are level with Plock and two points ahead of Zagreb.

HC PPD Zagreb (CRO) vs C.S. Dinamo Bucuresti (ROU) 28:29 (16:15)

  • Zagreb were constantly ahead until they led 24:23 in the 52nd minute, profiting from their initial 5:2 lead, thanks to a strong defensive performance
  • Dinamo found their rhythm in the middle of the first half, improved in attack and reduced the gap to only one goal at the break
  • but like in the first period, Zagreb clearly had the better start after the break and pulled ahead to their first five-goal gap at 21:16, boosted by goals from Zvonimir Srna and Timur Dibirov, who both struck eight times
  • the visitors showed morale and levelled the score for the first time at 24:24, but Dinamo's last two goals, scored by Ali Zein and Andrii Akimenko, secured the Romanian side their first away win in group A
  • thanks to his six strikes at Zagreb, Ukrainian right wing Akimenko climbs to second place on the top scorer list, with 37 goals

Timur Dibirov unstoppable

He scores, he scores and he scores – despite his age of 39 years, Timur Dibirov still plays like Swiss clockwork. Precisely, no mistakes, always correct.

Around a year ago, the Russian left wing had scored his 1,000th goal in the EHF Champions League for HC Vardar 1961 – the club with which he won the Champions League in 2017 and 2019.

After his transfer to Zagreb, Dibirov, who has now scored 33 goals this season, is still worth his weight in gold for the record Croatian champions. But even his last strike to give Zagreb a 28:27 lead was not enough for them to take the points on Wednesday evening.

We have to be happy and satisfied with the score, especially because of
our amazing fans. I have to be honest, however, and say we absolutely
can't be happy with the way we played today. The first half was a
disaster for us – we were way too slow and the defence was simply not
Xavier Pascual
Coach, Dinamo Bucuresti
It was a real fight throughout the encounter, with both teams aiming for the win that would bring them a step closer to the knockout round of the competition. I feel like we were playing well all the way until those last few minutes of the match, in which we allowed them to turn the result over.
Zvonimir Srna
Left back, HC PPD Zagreb

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