Ferencvaros and Barceloneta have secured the top positions in their respective groups of the Champions League Group Phase and Jadran Split has become the fourth team to qualify for the quarterfinal stage (after Ferencvaros, Barceloneta, and Pro Recco).
Ferencvaros extended its winning streak in Group C by defeating Crvena Zvezda with a massive 20:6 victory. Jadran Split won three points in a close contest against Jadran Herceg Novi (16:14) and secured 2nd place. The Croats’ upcoming match against Ferencvaros will be a formality because they can’t move higher.
Barceloneta kept a perfect record in Group D. The Spanish champion beat Vouliagmeni 16:10. Marseille defeated Spandau 04 13:11, but the question of 2nd place in this group remains open.
2024 Champions League, Day 5
Ferencvaros – Crvena Zvezda 20:6 (4:3, 5:1, 5:0, 6:2)
Ferencvaros: Mandic 3, Ven Vigvari 3, Molnar 3, D. Varga 2, Jansik 2, Argyropoulos 2, Di Somma 1, Fekete 1, Ak.Nagy 1, Merkulov 1, Ad. Nagy 1.
Crvena Zvezda: M. Radovic 2, Bursac 1, Vasic 1, Gogov 1,Seman 1,
The match in Budapest was similar to the encounter between the same rivals in Belgrade. Ferencvaros started breaking the rival in the second half. The visitors, who played without Gavril Subotic, kept up with the Hungarians for almost a quarter and a half. They trailed 4:5 in the 10th minute. In the following minutes, both teams made mistakes, but Ferencvaros produced a 4:0 run by the end of the first half. Daniel Szakonyi, who replaced Soma Vogel in front of the hosts’ goal, saved a penalty from Vasic in the second period, which was an additional stimulus for Ferencvaros.
The Hungarians continued rolling after the middle break. They added six goals and were up 15:4 before Crvena Zvezda scored its first goal in the second half, which happened only in the 27th minute.
Ferencvaros didn’t slow down and set the season record with a 14-goal win. Until today, the biggest win in the 2024 Champions League was Olympiacos’ 19:6 victory over Dinamo Tbilisi.
All players of the home team got on the scoresheet.
Jadran S – Jadran HN 16:14 (2:3, 3:2, 7:5, 4:4)
Jadran Split: Bukic 5, Marinic Kragic 4, Dj.Radovic 3, Cagalj 1, Butic 1, Kharkov 1, Fatovic 1.
Jadran Herceg Novi: Nagaev 6, Vujovic 2, Da.Radovic 2, Sladovic 2, Kholod 1, M.Gardasevic 1
Unlike the match in Budapest, the game in Split was very exciting, with a lot of turns and comebacks.
The visitors got off to a better start. Jadran HN led 3:1 in the 7th minute. However, Jadran Split scored four straight goals in less than three minutes to take a 5:3 lead. Still, the Montenegrins came back into the match. Ivan Nagaev closed the second quarter with two goals, and the teams were tied at 5:5 at halftime.
The visitors regained a lead in their first possession in the second half. Sladovic converted a man-up for 6:5. Jadran Split answered with a 3:0 run this time for 8:6. The hosts, who scored from almost each of their opportunities in the third quarter, streched the margin to three (10:7, 11:8, 12:9).
Two seconds before the final break, Nagaev scored from a penalty (10:12), and that was the start of the visitors’ new comeback. They leveled at 12:12 and 13:13 in the fourth period. But, in the middle of the fourth quarter, the Croats scored two back-to-back goals, which were vital for their win. Luka Bukic added his fifth goal – 14:13. Shortly after, Loren Fatovic scored his first (and only) in the game, from a big distance – 15:13. Then, the teams quickly exchanged the goals. The Croatian champion kept a 2-goal advantage and booked the ticket for the next round.
Jadran Herceg Novi will try to beat Crvena Zvezda in Belgrade in the last round to climb to 3rd place, which may be an advantage before the LEN Euro Cup eighth-final draw.
Standings: 1. Ferencvaros 15, 2. Jadran S 9, 3. Crvena Zvezda 4, 4. Jadran HN 2.
Barceloneta – Vouliagmeni 16:10 (3:2, 4:2, 5:3, 4:3)
Barceloneta: Munarriz 3, Tahull 3, Perrone 3, Sanahuja 2, Larumbe 2, De Toro 1, Paul 1, Bustos 1.
Vouliagmeni: Papasifakis 2, D.Woodhead 2, Konstantopoulos 2, Chalyvopoulos 1, Almyras 1,
Barceloneta didn’t let Vouliagmeni make a surprise, but the Greek team was a tough opponent, like in all the previous matches.
Although Barceloneta earned a 4-goal lead midway through the second period (7:3), the Greeks, who were missing an experienced center-forward, Nemanja Ubovic, didn’t give up. They reduced the gap to two early in the third quarter (7:9). However, Barceloneta regained control soon after and scored three consecutive goals by the end of the third period. With a goal from a counter-attack by Alberto Munarriz, the Spaniards had a comfortable five-goal lead (12:7) going into the final quarter. Tahull scored the first goal of the fourth quarter for Barceloneta, ending any hopes of a comeback for Vouliagmeni.
Marseille – Spandau 04 13:11 (6:4, 1:2, 3:1, 3:4)
Marseille: Crousillat 3, Vernoux 3, Spaic 2, Velotto 2, Bouet 1, Manhercz 1, Vukicevic 1.
Spandau 04: Chiru 2, Strelezkij 2, Tomasovic 2, Abramson 2, Tkac 1, Stamm 1, Sedlmayer 1.
Marseille needed a 4-goal win today to mathematically secure 2nd place and qualify for the quarterfinals. The French led for most of the time. Spandau leveled just once. Still, the difference was never bigger than three goals.
Marseille is three points ahead od Spandau, but the Germans are better than the French in head-to-head clashes (they beat the French champion 13:10 in Berlin). So, if the teams are tied after the last round, Spandau will finish in second place. Both clubs will have demanding tasks on Day 6. Marseille will welcome Barceloneta, and Spandau will go to Greece to face Vouliagmeni. The Spaniards and the Greeks will be without any pressure, but they surely won’t give their rivals the points on the silver plate.
After ten goals in the first quarter, both teams consolidated their defenses in the second period. The next goal came only in the 13th minute. Leftie Tyler Abramson cut the deficit to one goal. Spandau, which played with a new head coach, Vladimir Markovic, was a better rival in the second quarter and managed to catch up with the rival with 22 seconds left on the clock. Abramson was the scorer again – 6:6. However, Marseille forced an exclusion and had a man-up in the final 13 seconds of this quarter. Spandau’s goalkeeper Laszlo Baksa saved a shot from Andrija Prlainovic, but Thomas Vernoux found the net from a rebound, and the hosts had a slim advantage at halftime.
Marseille kept the momentum gained at the finish of the first half and built a 3-goal lead in the third period (8:5, 9:6, 10:7). If they had won by a three-goal margin, the French would almost certainly have placed among the top eight, because of a significantly better goal-difference than the Germans.
However, the hosts, who had great support from the fans, couldn’t keep a desired lead. Spandau opened the third period with two quick goals within 50 seconds (Tomasovic and Chiru) and came close again – 9:10. In the remaining time, the teams exchanged goals. Neither of the sides could do what they wished – Spandau to level the score and Marseille to earn a 3-goal lead. Thomas Vernoux set the final score with an excellent goal from a very difficult position – 13:11 with 48 seconds remaining. Spandau forced an exclusion in its last possession and kept the ball almost until the end.
Standings: 1. Barceloneta 15, 2. Marseille 9, 3. Spandau 6, 4. Vouliagmeni 0.