Velux EHF Champions League recap (Round 3)Author: SGL, Published: 01.10.2017.
Gorenje and Vardar remain unbeaten, Celje achieved a huge victory over Kielce. Metalurg also recorded their first Champions League win of the season. A great round for almost all SEHA teams. SEHA- Gazprom League is back on Tuesday after some exciting Champions League action.
Group B: Meshkov Brest - Telekom Veszprem 26:29 (12:14)
Veszprem continued their fine streak against Meshkov with another well-deserved victory. The Hungarian champions took advantage of every mistake made by the home team, especially late in the game during Meshkov's attempted comeback. The Belarusians started the game well, taking a 7-4 lead in the first half, but Veszprem did not allow them to separate even further. Ultimately, Veszprem had a few more players ready to score goals. Lekai led his team once more with 8 goals with Ilic adding some support with 5. Back line Djordjic- Igropulo combined for 13 goals for the hosts and the experienced Rastko Stojkovic chipped in with 5 more. After a really tough schedule, Meshkov are left with one victory and two losses, whereas Veszprem remain unbeaten.
Group D: Metalurg - Sporting CP 28:27 (17:13)
A much needed win for the young Metalurg squad! After three consecutive defeats for Cervar's team, they finally put the pieces together and put on a commanding performance against Sporting. Despite not being the favorites, Metalurg rewarded their fans with an inspiring effort to take control of the match early on. Eight players appeared on the scoresheet for the hosts and every goal-scorer scored at least twice. Kuzmanovski scored 6, Palevski added 5 with Jaganjac and Andjelic chipping in 4 goals each. A win that should give this young team bunch of confidence for the rest of the season.
Group B: Celje PL - PGE Vive Kielce 31:27 (16:12)
In this match, 3 Dujshebaevs were involved, but Alex was the only one that came out as a winner. The younger Dujshebaev brother had a great game for his team Celje that recorded their first Champions League win of the season. It was terrific overall performance from the Slovenian champions, that got important defensive stops whilst scoring key goals when it mattered the most. In addition to that, their goalkeepers Lesjak and Panjtar pulled some excellent saves in the second half to keep the lead somewhat safe. Gal Marguc scored 7, Mitrovic and Alex Dujshebaev added 5 for the hosts. On the other side, Djukic had 6 and three other players netted 4 times. It is fair to say that Tamse got the better off his oponnent Talant Dujshebaev. Kielce now lost their second Champions League match of the season, after Meshkov Brest defeated them in the first round.
Group A: Vardar - PPD Zagreb 28:21 (13:10)
Zagreb started the match well, grabbing an early 3-0 lead, but Vardar started to get going and established a solid lead, keeping it until the very last second. Zagreb lacked pace, creativity and aggression throughout the entire match. Stipe Mandalinic (9 goals) and Luka Mrakovcic (3) were the only players capable of making a difference. On the other side, Maqueda stood out in first half with 4 goals, Borozan picked up in the second and ended the match with 4 goals. Zagreb were poor defensively, struggling to keep up with Vardar's physical and pacey playing style. Kastelic and Sterbik both did well in goal for their teams, both making a double-digit number of saves. Vardar once more showed they are on another level and have now won all 3 Champions League matches. Zagreb are left with a sole point after 3 rounds and they host Orlen Wisla Plock next Sunday; a match that is simply a must win.
Group C: Gorenje Velenje - Skjern Handbold 31:29 (15:14)
A fantastic campaign continues for Gorenje! Babic's team is now 3 of 3 in Champions League, after impressive wins against Ademar Leon, Dinamo Bucuresti and now Skjern, Danish vice-champions. It was another similar performance, the Slovenian team took the lead in first half and were able to hold on to it for the rest of the match. Niko Medved scored 5, but had a lot of help in an experienced Alem Toskic (5 goals) with Markotic and Brumen adding 4 each. The way this team is playing, the rest of the season is looking quite promising for the Slovenian vice-champions.
SEHA- Gazprom League is back on Tuesday, with 3 matches. Nexe are traveling to Brest, Tatran are hosting Dinamo and PPD Zagreb are staying in Skopje to face Lino Cervar's Metalurg.