On at 23:47 CEST
Carlos Ortega’s Barça began the defense of the title in the Champions League with a convincing victory on the Flensburg court, by 21-25, in a clash in which Benjamin Buric’s goals, for the German team, stood out with 15 stops , and Gonzalo Pérez de Vargas, also with 15. Barça’s attacking potential with its two French left-back Dika Mem (7 goals) and Melvin Richardson (6) was another key.
Ortega, who was returning to direct a Champions League match after six years, began to show some of his cards in the team’s game. Without giving up speed in attack, he has built a defense with a triple wall with Ludovic Fabregas, Thiagus Petrus and the Egyptian Ali Zein, rotating with Luis Frade.
In attack, a devastating start with three goals from Dika Mem and two from Áleix Gómez opened a clear gap (2-5, m.8). The control of the game was Barça, against a Flensburg with some important losses such as Magnus Rod and Lasse Svan and who played at a very slow pace. The Croatian Luka Cindric, who came out as director of the Barcelona game, was injured in the 10th minute with a blow to the left shoulder and did not return to the court. The tests that were carried out later determined that he suffers a shoulder dislocation and will have to undergo surgery. The young Slovenian Domen Makuc assumed his role in the match.
The German team remained in the game thanks to the performance of the Bosnian goalkeeper Benjamin Buric (8 stops in the first half) and the maximum penalties (3) transformed by the Swedish Hampus Wanne, but the gap for Barça was widening (8-12 , m.27). The break was 10-13 and the start of the second half was a recital by goalkeeper Buric. Danish winger Larsen reduced the gap (12-13, m.34) with a Flesnsburg playing faster.
It was the turn of Gonzalo Pérez de Vargas and his saves, together with the success of Melvyn Richardson and Ludovic Fábregas, who returned a clear income to Barça (16-19 m. 45), although the Swedish central Jim Gottfridsson threw his team well in attack. Ortega realized and with 17-19 (m.48) requested time to calm his attack and ask his men for more fluidity. German coach Mike Machulla did the same (17-20, m.51) in a final attempt to turn the score around, placing seven players in attack without a goalkeeper.
Richardson took center stage, calmed down the game and it was he himself who achieved the maximum advantage until then (18-23, m.56). Two minutes later, the 18-year-old winger Martí Soler made his Champions League debut and the clash ended 21-25.
21 – SG Flensburg (10 + 11): Buric; Steinhauser (2), Golla (1), Gottfridsson (3), Mads Mensah Larsen (3), Mensing (6), Wanne (6.4p) -starting seven- Jensen (-) and Möller (ps).
25 – Barça (13 + 12): Gonzalo Pérez de Vargas; Aleix Gómez (5.1p), Mem (7), Fábregas (2), Thiagus Petrus (-), Ali Zein (1), Cindric (-), Ángel Fernández (1) -starting seven-, Frade (2), Makuc (-), Richardson (6), Lángaro (1), Janc (-), Martí Soler (-) and Leo Maciel (ps).
Scoreboard every five minutes: 1-2, 3-5, 5-6, 7-10, 8-11, 10-13 (rest), 12-15,16-17, 16-19, 17-19, 18-22 and 21- 25 (final).
Referees: Arthur Brunner (SUI) and Morad Salah (SUI). They excluded Jensen (m.23) for Flensburg and Ali Zein (m.30) and Mem (m.40 and 44) for Barça.
Incidents: Match corresponding to the first day of Group B of the Champions League 2021-2022 played at the Flens Arena in Flensburg (Germany) before about 2,100 spectators.