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03.03.2008, 14:24
Montpellier hold on
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The French clinch a 28-26 victory at home against Ciudad, but the Spanish side still have an advantage in Group 2.
 

Montpellier hold on

Ciudad Real will have to fight one more week to arrive to the semi-finals of the Champions League. Montpellier’s 28-26 victory in France against the Spanish keeps the hopes of the French club alive. However, the team of Djusebaiev are still the favourites of the group. Practically, Ciudad Real need two more points to reach the first place.

Spanish coach Dujshebaev could not count on Sterbik, Chema, Metlicic and Rutenka, which was a serious blow before this important game. Montpellier tried to take advantage of this.

The French prepared for a hard game with a very strong defence. French keeper Karaboue made a very good perfomance in the goal and he was very well helped by his mates. Montpellier took a lead soon and Ciudad were just trying to catch up with the hosts.

Though Dujshebaev may have intended to give a rest for some of the key players, he had to change his mind in halftime. It was late. The Ciudad Real defence could not improve, while Bojinovic and Hmam scored easy goals. These two Montpellier players scored 15 goals and indicated that the Ciudad defence also has weaknesses.

The final score, a two-goal difference, is in fact very good for Ciudad that have a better direct encounter over Montpellier. This might also have an importance at the end in case the teams finish with the same number of points.

The Spanish side will have more chance to make it to the semi-final, while they will also have to avoid more injuries in the team. The coach is mostly worried about the physical problems of some important players right now when the decisive phase of the competition is coming up.


TEXT: Fernando Urra Goñi
 
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