FCB Intersport – Atlético Madrid: Sweet defeat (29-30)
Barça Intersport lost by one goal to Atlético Madrid. The score allows Barça to remain atop the league table thanks to their better head-to-head record against the Madrid side
Xavi Pascual’s men, who went to the break with a five-goal deficit, came out in the second half and managed to secure a result that allows the Catalans to remain in the driving seat of the Asobal League
The 5,404 supporters at the Palau Blaugrana thoroughly enjoyed the handball Clásico
FCB Intersport, 29 BM Atlètic de Madrid, 30
FC Barcelona Intersport: Saric, Noddesbo (4), Tomàs (1), Sarmiento (7), Nagy (1), Rutenka (6, 2p), Morros (-) -starting team-, Juanín (3), Entrerríos (2), Sorhaindo (1), Jernemyr, Rocas (1), Igropulo (3).
BM Atlético Madrid: Sterbik, Kallman (4), Markussen (1), Aguinagalde (3), Abalo (7), Cañellas (6, 2p), Lazarov (4) -starting team-, Hombrados (p.s.), Eduard Fernández (-), Guardiola (1), Davis (1), José María Rodríguez (1), Entrerríos (2), Dinart.
Referees: Óscar Raluy and Ángel Sabroso. Red for Nagy (27'). Exclusions for Dinart, Igropulo, Abalo, Guardiola and Tomàs.
Parcials cada cinc minuts: 2-2, 5-6, 7-8, 9-14, 12-16, 13-18 (descans), 17-18, 19-18, 21-22, 23-25, 27-27, 29-30 (final).
Pavelló: Palau Blaugrana (5.404 espectadors).
The Barça Interport players and the supporters at the Palau have rarely taken a defeat this well. The result against Atlético Madrid (29-30) brings the Asobal title that much closer to the Azulgranas due to the fact that Xavi Pascual’s men preserved their head-to-head record against the Madrid side. This means that if Barça win their next two games - this was Barça’s first defeat of the season - they will be champions of the Asobal League.
Altético take the initiative in the first half
The team managed by Talant Dujshabaev knew that they needed to win the match by more than one goal if they wanted to win the title. The Madrid side were focused and determined from the start. In the first half, Barça Intersport struggled to find their rhythm and they always trailed behind an Atlético Madrid side that, at one point, led by six goals. Moreover, with three minutes before the break, Nagy was shown a straight red for a foul on Alberto Entrerríos. There was little time left of the first 30 minutes of play and Barça were down to four men due to the exclusion of Igropulo and the expulsion of the captain. Despite these circumstances, the Azulgranas, with a decisive Saric, didn’t allow Atlético to extend their lead. The teams went to the break with 13-18 on the scoreboard.
Second half worthy of a title
Barça Intersport want this Liga title and they proved it in the second half. The team took the lead for the first time in the match when they went on a 6-0 run at the start of the half. The fight back was led by Saric and Rutenka. Atlético were not able to score until the 10th minute. The visiting team, however, took the lead with three consecutive goals. With five minutes remaining in the match, the scoreline was 27-27, but Atlético once again pulled in front. Raúl Entrerríos stepped up, playing as a keeper-player, and with nine seconds left in the game scored the definitive 29-30.
Despite losing, Barça Intersport saved the head-to-head record and they depend on themselves to be Asobal League champions.