FC Barcelona v Helvetia Anaitasuna: Barça keep up the pressure (34-23)
Xavi Pascual’s men power their way to a seventh Asobal league victory to consolidate their lead at the top of the table
The FC Barcelona handball team swept aside Helvetia Anaitasuna tonight in the Palau Blaugrana to make it seven wins in seven games and cement their position at the top of the Asobal league table. It is also Barça’s 600th victory since the Asobal league was created in 1990-91. The game featured the debut of Michael Kasal.
A frenetic start
Nikola Karabatic led the Barça charge with five of the nine goals scored in the opening ten minutes. Pascual’s men dominated with pace and led 10-4 after the first quarter of an hour. Noddesbo chipped in with three while Gurbindo opened up a +7. However, in the 20th minute, Kasal became the star of the evening, making his debut at just 17 and scoring a goal to put the scoreboard at 14-7. The visitors trimmed back the lead at halftime to 16-10.
Second half goal feast
Saric replaced Sterbik in goal for the second half. Once again Barça set a blistering pace with David Balaguer getting four. Helvetia Anaitasuna pulled back three in succession to reduce the gap (24-18) but Barça continued to pile on the pressure with Gurbindo getting Barça goal number 30 to put his side 10 goals clear. A final surge by the home team produced a final score of 34-23.
Karabatic and Noddesbo, with seven goals, were the game’s top scorers. Barça now face a tough challenge in Europe with a visit to PSG Handball.