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News article

9 days ago - 12/2/2017

Vardar breeze past Kristianstad

The amazing performance of current VELUX EHF titleholders Vardar saw them take a 31:15 win over Kristianstad at home.

•    Defending champs top Group A with eight victories and two draws
•    Vardar achieve new club record with biggest victory in the Champions League
•    Macedonian champions are the only unbeaten team this season
•    Kristianstad remain in sixth position and will fight for last ticket to Last 16
•    Dibirov top scorer with seven goals, while Arpad Sterbik unbeatable in Vardar’s goal

GROUP A

HC Vardar (MKD) vs IFK Kristianstad (SWE) 31:15 (14:8)

Since IFK Kristianstad joined the VELUX EHF Champions League three years ago, they have met the Macedonian champions Vardar six times and tonight they continued the inglorious record with the sixth defeat.

Vardar wingers Dibirov and Cupic were dominant in the beginning of the match and the hosts were in full control in the first half thanks to the stunning saves of Arpad Sterbik.

When Vardar was in lead with 6:3, IFK Kristianstad coach Lindgren asked for timeout. However, instead of reducing the gap, Vardar increased the difference and furthermore had a solid lead of five goals on the 23rd minute mark, thanks to a Karacic in-flight goal.

The defending champions never lost the lead in the first half and Arpad Sterbik successfully led his team to a half-time break a score line of 14:8.
At the beginning of the second half Kristianstad made some errors and Vardar increased the gap with five consecutive goals, 19:8.

The Swedish outfit lost their attacking confidence and were not able to place the ball in Arpad Sterbik’s net. Finally, in the 38th minute Hallen scored the first goal in the second half for the Swedish champions.

At the other end, the defending champions were unstoppable and were decisively ahead 24:9 in the 46th minute.

With a desperate attacking game and score of only 7 goals in the second half, IFK Kristianstad at the end left the guests court losing by a 16-goal gap.

Post-match reactions

“I’m very happy to win this match because we won against an opponent that plays very fast and it’s very strong.

“Last year we had many problems with them and we learned a lot since our last meeting.

“They played very well against Barcelona and Szeged this season, and in addition they have a great coach,” said Vardar’s coach Raul Gonzalez at the press conference.

“They have a fantastic goalkeeper and we didn’t have the power and speed to score goals.

“We had problems in offence and Vardar played strong in one-on-one situations which we were not able to stop.”

“We are disappointed to lose by such high score although we knew that we will have difficult game.

“We definitely cannot be satisfied with the performance today” said Ola Lindgren of IFK.

Author: Amina Idrizi / bc