No doubt, the big match is the clash of Olympiacos and Barceloneta in Group A, the two sides having gained four wins in as many rounds so far. There are other highly important matchups too, especially in Group B where almost all matches produce extreme excitements.
Olympiacos and Barceloneta both have been flying high so far, delivered four fine victories – but now one of these winning series would come to an end (or both, in case of a tie). The home field may give the Greeks the necessary edge, still, it’s a hard call to make any prediction – apart from noting that Barceloneta’s coach Elvis Fatovic, a Croat, spent some time with coaching the hosts’ key players, goalie Marko Bijac and 2m defender Andro Buslje while working with the national team some years ago.
Some kilometres away along the Greek coasts, in Vouliagmeni, a crucial tie is due between Vouliagmeni and Jadran as both sides are running for the fourth spot behind the big three in Group A.
Title-holder Recco should have no problem to add another win in Hannover and Radnicki need to do the same against Dinamo to stay on course in the race for the F8.
Group B encounters usually bring tight results, one-two goals separate the teams if it’s not a draw at the end (which already happened four times). Novi Beograd is the only unbeaten side in this group but now the F8 hosts are heading to Marseille. The French could finally win a game in the last round, so this is definitely the game to watch on Wednesday.
The Hungarians’ away matches also promise some thrills. Ferencvaros visit Berlin and with some key players being injured, they might face some challenging moments against Spandau. OSC are definitely the underdog in Brescia, still, they also gained their first win in December, so they seem to be on the rise too.
Jug recorded one win so far – though had a fine draw in Belgrade –, so meeting Sabadell at home offers them a good chance to take another big step; any other outcome would jeopardise their run for an 8th consecutive F8 appearance.
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Fixtures, Day 5
Group A (Tuesday)
19.00 (18.00CET) Olympiacos Piraeus (GRE) v Zodiac CNA Barceloneta (ESP)
19.00 (18.00CET) Vouliagmeni (GRE) v Jadran Split (CRO)
19.00 Waspo 98 Hannover (GER) v Pro Recco (ITA)
20.30 Radnicki Kragujevac (SRB) v Dinamo Tbilisi (GEO)
Group B (Wednesday)
19.00 Jug Adriatic Osiguranje Dubrovnik (CRO) v Astralpool Sabadell (ESP)
19.30 Spandau 04 Berlin (GER) v FTC-Telekom Budapest (HUN)
20.00 CN Marseille (FRA) v Novi Beograd (SRB)
20.30 AN Brescia (ITA) v Genesys OSC Budapest (HUN)