All you need to know about Barcelona - PSG Handball
Paris Saint-Germain Handball kick off a series of four away games - which includes Montpellier, Kielce and Aix - when they travel to Barcelona for their EHF Champions League Matchday 5 clash on Thursday evening.
As expected Group B is proving to be hotly contested! Two points separate first from fifth and, for the moment, Veszprém, Kielce and Barcelona all share the lead. In a great piece of news for their competitors, the Catalans - who won all their Champions League matches last season - are no longer unbeaten! The reigning European champions were beaten 29-28 by Veszprém in Hungary on Matchday 3. They have, however, won their three other matches and have six points.
Meanwhile Les Rouge et Bleu are not far off the pace. With five points, they could even take the lead in the group with a win at the Palau Blaugrana! For that to happen, Raul Gonzalez's men would have to win and, at the same time, Veszprém and Kielce would have to slip up against Flensburg and Porto respectively.
Nikola, Kamil against their former club
Two of our players know Thursday night's arena perfectly: Nikola Karabatic and Kamil Syprzak. The former played for two years in Catalonia, where he won the Champions League in 2015. The latter played for Barcelona for four seasons, during which time he won no fewer than 14 titles!
A clash of Olympians
More than half of the 16 Olympic champions who won titles in Rio last summer will be on the court on Thursday, including nine gold medallists! Four of them are Barcelona players: Dika Mem, Ludovic Fabregas, Melvyn Richardson and Timothey N'Guessan (injured at the end of the competition). And the other five are Parisians: Vincent Gérard, Yann Genty, Luka Karabatic, Nedim Remili and Nikola Karabatic.
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We can also add silver medallists Mikkel Hansen and Henrik Toft Hansen of Denmark and bronze medallists Gonzalo Perez de Vargas and Aleix Gomez for Barcelona and Ferran Solé Sala for Paris to the list.
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Head to head
This is the eighth time this high-octane European fixture has been played! For the moment, the Catalans dominate with six wins and just one defeat. Les Rouge et Bleu have yet to win on their opponents' home ground, and their only win over Barcelona dates back to November 2016 (33-26). That match also had a rather French flavour to it, with the top three scorers - Nedim Remili (nine goals), Luka Karabatic (five) and Dika Mem (five) - all Frenchmen. And they will face each other again this Thursday!
To follow the match (kick-off at 20:45):
- Television: Eurosport 2
- Our social networks: via our live-tweet
It goes without saying. The breathtaking matches this Round 5 will leave you speechless 😮#MOTW 🌟 ➡️ @FCBhandbol 🆚 @psghand— EHF Champions League (@ehfcl) October 19, 2021
What will be the biggest surprise of the round? 💬
Round preview 📝: https://t.co/LHiwbvMup3 pic.twitter.com/xuPkPj5cUt
(Credits: A. Gadoffre/TeamPics/PSG)