OSC Budapest (Hungary), Jadran Split (Croatia), Brescia (Italy) and Crvena Zvezda (Serbia) advanced to the 2021/22 Champions League after the qualifications that were ended today with the 2nd leg of the playoffs.
OSC, Jadran, and Brescia practically secured their CHL berths after crucial wins in the 1st leg.
The most important return match was an encounter between Crvena Zvezda and Savona because only one goal separated the rivals after the 1st leg (Crvena Zvezda recorded an away 9:8 win on Saturday). Today’s duel in Belgrade was a big thriller. The game ended in a draw – 11:11, and Crvena Zvezda qualified for the Champions League.
OSC was defeated by Szolnok in the second leg (10:12) today, but the Budapest-based side recorded a 15:9 victory in the first leg.
Jadran defeated Mladost in Zagreb 7:3, for a 10-goal victory in the aggregate score (first match – 14:7), Brescia defeated Barcelona in both games. Today, the Italian champion achieved a 16:13 victory, after beating the rival by four goals (14:10) in Spain.
Champions League Qualifications, 3rd round, 2nd leg: OSC Budapest – Szolnok 10:12 (1st leg 15:6), Crvena Zvezda – Savona 11:11 (9:8), Mladost – Jadran Split 3:7 (7:14), Brescia – Barcelona 16:13 (14:10).
Serbia is the only country with three teams in the Champions League as Crvena Zvezda joined wild-card holders Radnicki and Novi Beograd. It happens for the second time. Three Serbian clubs played in the Champions League Main Round nine years ago (season 2012/13). But, the competition format was different in that season – 21 teams played in the Preliminary Round. Crvena Zvezda became the European champion in 2013, Partizan won 4th place, while Vojvodina finished the season in the group stage.
Four countries will be represented by two teams each: Italy (Pro Recco and Brescia), Croatia (Jug and Jadran), Hungary (Ferencvaros and OSC) and Germany (Hannover and Spandau)
OSC and Jadran Split advanced to the Champions League after playing in all three qualification rounds. Crvena Zvezda and Brescia started in the second round.
Szolnok, Savona, Mladost and Barcelona will play in the LEN Euro Cup quarterfinals.
2021/22 Champions League Qualifications, Playoffs, 2nd leg
OSC Budapest – Szolnok 10:12 (2:1, 2:1, 3:5, 3:5) – 1st leg 15:6
OSC Budapest: Vigvari 4, Burian 3, Harai 1,Sziladi 1, Salamon 1.
Szolnok: Angyal 2, Szeghalmi 2, Konarik 2, Zovic 2, A.Nagy 1, Gbadamassi 1, Jansik 1, Ge. Kovacs 1.
The Hungarian derby was quite interesting. The teams were in a side-by-side race for most of the time, but Szolnok was nine goals down before the first whistle, so OSC’s win in the aggregate score wasn’t in danger. In the 10th minute, OSC already had a 3-goal advantage (4:1) and crushed Szolnok’s dreams of a surprise. Still, the visitors didn’t give in. Szolnok leveled at 4:4. In the 22nd minute, the visitors went in front for the first time (6:5). Before the final quarter, the score was 7:7. The fourth period was an exchange of goals. Szolnok took the lead three times, while OSC equalized on each occasion until 10:10. Twenty seconds from the end, Szeghalmi gave Szolnok an 11:10 lead. OSC tried to level the score by setting up a 7 on 6 attack in the last possession. However, the hosts lost the ball, and Szolnok’s Konarik sent it into the unguarded net for a consolation 12:10 victory.
Crvena Zvezda – Savona 11:11 (4:2, 2:3, 1:3,4:3) – 1st leg 9:8
Crvena Zvezda: Tankosic 3, Subotic 3, Pjesivac 2, Djurdjic 1, Basara 1, Gardasevic 1.
Savona: Fondelli 4, Bruni 3, Iocchi Gratta 2, Vuskovic 1, Da Rold 1.
Savona opened the game in Belgrade with a 2:1 lead (4th minute). But, after that, Crvena Zvezda’s defense worked perfectly and kept the Italians goalless for more than nine minutes. The home side scored five goals in a row and went to 6:2. But, Savona responded in a similar way. The Italians netted three goals in the last 187 seconds of the first half and reduced the gap to 5:6 before the middle break. Matteo Iocchi Gratta opened the third quarter with an action goal for 6:6. Crvena Zvezda’s scoreless phase lasted 08:57 minutes. In the 22nd minute, the Pjesivac converted a man up to break the hosts’ silence (7:6). However, Savona’s Bruni found the net twice in the last minute and a half of this period (both were goals with a power-play advantage) and the visitors entered the final quarter leading 8:7.
A big drama was continued after the last break. Tankosic found the net for 8:8 (the 25th minute), but Fondelli responded immediately (9:8). But, it turned out that it was Savona’s last lead in the match. Crvena Zvezda scored three unanswered goals and built a 2-goal advantage (11:9) with three minutes left on the clock. However, the visitors were still in the race towards the Champions League. Savona leveled at 11:11, just 26 seconds before the final buzzer. But, it was too late. The Serbs managed to keep the ball in the remaining time and celebrated the tie, which meant a big win, with their fans, who supported them from the packed stands.
Mladost – Jadran S 3:7 (1:2, 0:2, 0:3, 2:0) – 1st leg 7:14
HAVK Mladost:Dasic 1, Rakovac 1, Bajic 1.
Jadran Split: Kharkov 2, Duzevic 2, Butic 1, Pejkovic 1, Bukic 1.
Jadran arrived in Zagreb without one of its best players, Niksa Dobud, but it enjoyed a comfortable cruise. Mladost, which played without first-pick goalkeeper Marcelic (injury), wasn’t an equal opponent to the Split-based side. Mladost leveled at 1:1 in the 6th minute. After that, Jadran produced a 6:0 series for a 7:1 lead. The hosts scored their 2nd goal two and a half minutes before the final buzzer. In the remaining time, they added one more, so Jadran achieved a 7:3 victory.
Brescia – Barcelona 16:13 (2:1, 4:5, 5:3, 5:4) – 1st leg 14:10
Brescia:C. Presciutti 3, Renzuto 3, Luongo 3, Lazic 2, Gianazza 1, Balzarini 1, Alesiani 1, Di Somma 1, Gitto 1.
Barcelona: Delgado 4, Mallarach 4, Tahull 2, Durik 1, Estrany 1, Ramon 1.
The duel between Brescia and Barcelona was an even contest until 8:8. Still, the hosts controlled the game and didn’t let Barcelona take a lead. Brescia scored three straight goals between the 21st and 24th minute to earn a 3-goal advantage (11:8) and that proved vital for their win. Barcelona couldn’t come back. In the middle of the last period, Brescia stretched the margin to four (14:10) and it was clear that the Italian champion would qualify for the best competition for the clubs in the world.
Champions League Groups
Dinamo Tbilisi (Georgia)
Novi Beograd (Serbia)
Radnicki Kragujevac (Serbia)
Jadran Split (Croatia)
Pro Recco (Italy)
Jug Dubrovnik (Croatia)
Waspo 98 Hannover (Germany)
Spandau 04 (Germany)
Steaua Bucharest (Romania)
OSC Budapest (Hungary)
Crvena Zvezda (Serbia)
Day 1, schedule
Group A (October 26)
Barceloneta – Jadran Split
Novi Beograd – Radnicki
Brescia – Ferencvaros
Olympiacos – Dinamo Tbilisi
Group B (October 27)
Marseille – Pro Recco
Crvena Zvezda – Spandau Berlin
Jug AO – Waspo Hannover
OSC Budapest – Steaua Bucharest