Hungarian side Pick Szeged are very good. They are even better at home, and were always going to a very stern test for Barça on the opening day of the EHF Champions League.
The Catalans had their chances, but great goalkeeping from Mikler in the first half and Alilovic in the second proved their undoing and they ended up losing 31-28.
But things looked particularly bad at the end of a first half that ended 18-11. Nine-down, the blaugrana then strung together an amazing 3-9 streak to get right back into the match and with seven minutes to go had pulled back to 27-26.
But the final flurry didn’t come and Barça will now have to wait until the visit of RK Celje to the Palau next Saturday at 8.00pm CEST to hopefully get their first European points of the campaign.
MOL-Pick Szeged: Mikler (-), Maqueda (7), Källman (2), Radivojevic (6), Gaber (1), Banhidi (5), Bombac (3), Alilovic, gk (-), Bodo (3), Stepancic (3), Cañellas (-), Heningman (1), Bajusz (-), Kasparek (-), Rosta (-), Sostaric (-).
Barça: Pérez de Vargas (-), Víctor Tomàs (2), Ariño (5), Dika Mem (5), Cindric (1), Pálmarsson (3), Fàbregas (8), Möller (ps), N’Guessan (2), Dolenec (-), Thiagus Petrus (-), Entrerríos (-), Aleix Gómez (-), Alex Pascual (1), Sorhaindo, Andersson (1).
Periods: 3-1, 6-4, 9-5, 12-7, 14-8, 18-11 (HT), 21-13, 22-17, 24-21, 26-23, 28-26, 29-27, 31-28 (FT).