Barcelona preserve podium streak with win over Kielce at the 2023 IHF Men's Super Globe

12 Nov. 2023

Barcelona preserve podium streak with win over Kielce at the 2023 IHF Men's Super Globe

For the ninth time in as many editions where they took part in, FC Barcelona ended up on the podium at the IHF Men’s Super Globe, with a 33:30 win over Industria Kielce in the bronze medal match of the 2023 edition of the competition.

While missing the final for the first time since 2015, Barcelona did seal the bronze medal, finishing the competition with three wins in four matches, only conceding a loss in extra-time against Füchse Berlin on Saturday.

FC Barcelona (ESP) vs Industria Kielce (POL) 33:30 (14:16)

FC Barcelona had previously never finished lower than the third place in their previous eight appearances at the IHF Men’s Super Globe, while Kielce had only finished third in 2016 and 2022. Therefore, something had to give when the two European powerhouses faced off in the bronze medal match of the 2023 edition.

The fiery rivalry between the two sides had another episode scheduled in this match and it was Kielce which drew first blood, weathering a good start from Barcelona. Some excellent saves from goalkeeper Andreas Wolff and well-executed fast breaks, doubled by great shots from left back Szymon Sicko saw Kielce create a 5:0 unanswered run.

It spanned for seven minutes and 36 seconds, in which time Kielce opened a 8:5 gap, turning the game on its head, after Barca had previously led by two goals, 5:3. From that moment on, the two teams started to trade both goals and misses, as Wolff and his fellow goalkeeper, Gonzalo Perez de Vargas, delivered some excellent saves.

The lead changed hands three times, but it was ultimately Kielce which had the first chance to win the match at the break, leading 16:14, taking advantage of Barca’s woes in attack, where the Spanish side turned the ball over eight times.

That was the main issue for the Spanish side, as the two teams had a similar shooting efficiency, 63% and 62% at the break, as more was to come in the last 30 minutes, with Barca never relenting a match, especially as they aimed to preserve their streak of eight podium finishes at the IHF Men’s Super Globe.

Indeed, it was Barca which had the better start of the second half, using a 3:0 run to wrestle back the lead from Kielce, after Perez de Vargas delivered another pair of excellent saves to frustrate Kielce. That run was linked to another 6:2 run, fueled by two goals each from Dika Mem, Jonathan Carlsbogard and Blaz Janc, as Barca took a 26:22 lead with 16 minutes to go, the largest lead in the match.

It was a lead which Barcelona never relented, with Dika Mem scoring eight goals, while Perez de Vargas stopped 14 shots for a 32% saving efficiency, with the two stars being Barcelona’s top performers in their 33:30 win.

Barcelona have won the title five times and finished on the second and third place two times each, as they extended their podiums streak to nine editions, as they confirmed their status as the most decorated team in the history of the IHF Men’s Super Globe.

On the other side, Kielce conceded their first loss in the bronze medal match and have finished fourth for the first time in history, after conceding two losses against the last two winners of the competition, SC Magdeburg in the semi-finals, and Barcelona in the bronze medal match.

hummel Player of the Match: Dika Mem (FC Barcelona)