Spanish domination of Europe

Spanish teams are dominating Europe, and the facts speak that. THW Kiel is the only non-Spanish team that is able to break the Spanish “monologue” in European Handball. With Barcelona winning this years (2011) Champions League , it is now 5 titles in the past 7 years for Spanish teams. Of course, that means Ciudad Real and Barcelona. If we thought that THW Kiel’s victory last year at LANXESS arena will begin at least few years of non-Spanish domination, we were wrong. The “Kings” and the “Catalans” blew away the German teams in this years semifinals, and have disappointed handball Germany, which was expecting much more this year from HSV Hamburg and Rhein-Neckar Lowen. If we could agree that Rhein-Neckar Lowen is perhaps not the same class as the other three, still HSV Hamburg’s performance in their match against Ciudad Real leaves place for doubt on whether what was done wrong  in team’s play in comparison to the Spanish one.Spanish teams played atomic handball, and with the help of some fantastic saves from Hombrados and Saric, they traced their way to the final. In the final, it was all-even, both teams knew each other and knew how to exploit other team’s weaknesses. But Barcelona had something more. They had the in-very-good-mood goalkeeper Danijel Saric. He was outstanding, was simply more than deservedly the man of the match, and for sure goes the attribute that Barcelona owes a large due of the title to him.What can we expect next season ? Barcelona is likely gonna keep the same squad. They could perhaps do one change in the playing squad with Myrhol coming, but that won’t change much and they will for sure be regarded again as one of the top favourites for the next year’s title in the same arena again, Lanxess Arena in Cologne. Perhaps we could expect something new from Ciudad Real. They have been doing simply too many changes when it comes to changing players for attack/defence, and this has perhaps costed them the title. Maybe we should expect more stability in the game, and see less changes, with perhaps buying a player that could play attack and defence as good.The Germans have underestimated, but they will still be very competitive next season, and might be unfortunately the only ones that could be having a shot at stopping the Spanish domination of Europe, unless we see some extraordinary plays from Montpellier, Chekhovskie Medvedi, etc… Teams that realistically need much stronger bench in order to compete at the same level as the Spanish and German clubs.All in all, Barcelona absolutely deserved the title. They went through THW Kiel in the quarter-finals, then Rhein-Neckar Lowen in the semifinal, and in the final Ciudad Real was swept away. Perhaps not as interesting matches as the last season, but then again, the next season is already here knocking at the door… ← Previous Story Barcelona conquers Europe! Barca 27-24 Ciudad Real Next Story → Gensheimer doesn’t break Perunicic’s record

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