Barça remains on the roof of Europe. The Catalan club became the first club to retain their title at the Final Four in Cologne by winning on penalties on Sunday in Germany against Kielce (37-35). Forced to go into overtime after an unbreathable match that ended 32-32, and completely crazy, the two teams went to the end of the suspense by playing a penalty shootout.
In this one, Barça won 5-3, with a decisive shot from Ludovic Fàbregas to offer the title. In overtime, the two teams were not separated (4-4), in the straight line of the meeting. Dika Mem had equalized at 32-32 in the 70th minute, before Kielce missed the match point in stride, following an involuntary deflection from the Brazilian Petrus on a shot from Álex Dujshebaev.
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An 11th title for Barça
Proof that this final was tight as anything, the maximum gap was only three goals to the advantage of Barça, rather dominating during regulation time. Problem: Dika Mem, decisive in overtime, did not kill the match at the very end of the second period. This allowed Kielce to snatch the extension thanks to a cannon shot from Artsem Karalek (32-32).
The Karalek equalizer that allowed Kielce to push Barca into extra time
For Barça, the most successful club in the competition, this success snatched with the guts is synonymous with 11th coronation in the Champions League. As it launched a new cycle with the arrival of Carlos Ortega, its former player (1994-2005), on the bench, the FCB managed to remain the king in Europe, something almost impossible in normal times. While his flagship club, in football, needs to revive economically, the handball section is doing like a charm. My than a club!
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