Barcelona take ASOBAL Cup title in Vigo
26 wins in 26 matches for unbeatable Barcelona Intersport
Can anyone beat Barcelona? So far, it looks very unlikely. In Europe, Xavi Pascual’s team has been victorious in every VELUX EHF Champions League game n
Meanwhile, in Spain, Barcelona won their second title of the season in Vigo after beating Atlético de Madrid in the final of the ASOBAL Cup.
A 32:24 win, which saw Barcelona Intersport add a twenty-sixth consecutive victory to their spectacular run, after winning fifteen League games, seven in VELUX EHF Champions League, and four in various Spanish cup competitions.
"We have twenty-six wins in a row and we only think about getting number twenty-seven.
"In every match my players are showing their hunger for victory. No one has given us anything," said Barcelona coach Xavi Pascual, in the press conference after the final.
The victory was rooted in the excellent defence that Barcelona showed at the beginning of second half, where the Catalonians went on a 7:0 run, that went a long way to securing the title.
"At the start of the second half we were superb in defence. That allowed us to go on this run, that is how we feel most comfortable. That was the key," said Pascual, who could not hide his satisfaction with the performance of his team.
A strong defensive unit, ended the hopes of a win for Atlético de Madrid, looked in a strong position after racing out to a four goal lead after ten minutes of the first half.
But the impassable Barcelona defense, which was without injured Magnus Jernemyr, gave the win to Xavi Pascual's team.
"We have time, we have twenty minutes," shouted Atlético's winger Jonas Kallman in time out called by Talant Dujshebaev to try to stop Barcelona’s breakaway on scoreboard.
In fact, Atletico Madrid, lead by French right back Xavier Barachet, who scored twice in a row, and the Bosnian goalkeeper Adnan Sabanovic lowered the deficet to only three goals (18:21) with seventeen minutes to go.
However, a two minute sanction to Mariusz Jurkiewicz and, the red card for the coach, Talant Dujshebaev, for angrily protesting the referees, ended Atlético's comeback.
Barcelona Intersport were guided by an excellent Raúl Entrerríos, voted most valuable player of the final, and an effective Jesper Noddesbo, top scorer with seven goals.
The triumph was the eighth ASOBAL Cup title for Barcelona, and the second this season, after beating Atlético de Madrid in the Spanish Supercup final earlier in the year.
TEXT: Javier Villanueva / cor