The first day of the EHF Champions League Final 4 is behind us. Telekom Veszprem opened the action with a win against the Polish champions PGE Vive Kielce 33:30 (13:13). In the second semi-final, Vardar made a historic comeback against the terrific Barca Lassa side.
Barca Lassa – Vardar 27:29 (16:9)
Barca Lassa started very well in the rematch of the 2017 semi-final of the EHF Champions League. The Spanish side jumped to an early lead, but Vardar mostly managed to keep up thanks to some great saves from Dejan Milosaljev. It was 7:4 in the 12th minute, but Kristopans immediately responded with a 130 km/h rocket. Barcelona continued to play really well, and they reached a 12:8 lead in the 22nd minute after Victor Tomas scored from the right wing. Roberto Parrondo was forced to call a time-out, but he couldn't do anything against Barcelona's goalkeeper Perez de Vargas. Nemanja Ilic scored another fast break goal and Barca Lassa were up by 6 goals. Vardar were very unlucky on some occasions, and nothing was stopping the Spanish team as the scoreboard showed 16:9 at half-time.
Second half started better for Vardar, and Christian Dissinger opened the scoring. Barca Lassa were too strong most of the time, and did not allow Vardar to make a full comeback. However, Vardar kept pushing, and eventually reached minus 2, in the 54th minute. Ivan Cupic scored the goal, but it was Dainis Kristopans playing incredible, and he had 8 goals at the time. The Latvian giant scored again, to make it 26:25 and Vardar fans were in complete euphoria. It was no stopping there, Moraes scored for 26:26. It just had to be, and Igor Karacic scored for Vardar’s first lead in the 58th minute. Kristopans scored again, Stoilov put the final mark on the match and Vardar sensationally made a comeback to reach the final again in 2017. They will play the former SEHA champions Telekom Veszprem in the final of the EHF Champions League.
In this semi-final Dainis Kristopans played yet another incredible match with 10 goals. Igor Karacic had 5 and Dejan Milosavljev recorded 15 unbelievable saves.
The final is scheduled for tomorrow at 18:00 CET in LANXESS Arena.