We came without pressure on this F4. The placement among the best 4 teams only confirms our quality, dedication and above all, our fighting spirit that we showed this season. The final is the "icing on the cake". There is no lost match for us, a rival that cannot be defeated, nor a situation that cannot be solved.
The bad efficiency and the lack of a "longer bench" were the reasons for not being an equal opponent in the 1st half. We started well, but then the opponent made many rotations, which were more heroic. They kept a fast pace and played strong in defence.
The red-black team played well, but they had many inefficient actions. There were situations when they could have scored, but the opponent's goalkeeper would save, or we would miss. The weak concentration at some points contributed to many technical faults. Dejan Milosavjlev confirmed his quality and the reason why he deserved his place in this season's All-star team. He saved 13 shots, more than goals we scored in the first half. We were 7 goals behind on halftime (9:16).
We continued with a similar game, but scoring was our main problem. We would come to a position to score, but we missed focus, and sometimes a bit of luck. In the 40th minute, Barcelona had a lead of 22:15, which announced a certain finish. Nobody believed that Vardar could make a turnover. However, the red-black team again showed its "craziness".
Vardar was not concentrated on the negative result, but on its game. From "minus 7" they reached 22:25 in the 49th minute. We introduced uncertainty in the court and on the stands. Ten minutes to the end, we were only 3 goals behind, and had a chance for a turnover. We started to play our aggressive defence and precise attack. Nothing was over, at least in the court.
In the 52nd minute, we complained on a suspicious penalty, which Barcelona missed. We were highly motivated. Kristopans was the man that could not be stopped. He forced 2-minute suspension and a penalty, which Ivan Chupic scored for a result of 24:26. Only 6,5 minutes to the end, and everything was possible. Kristopans reduced to 25:26 and Rogerio Morraes scored for 26:26 in the 57th minute.
Milosavljev saved again, and Vardar had a chance for its 1st lead. Barcelona played rough against Kristopans and the referees asked for VAR. They gave a red card to Dos Santos and the road to the final was clear. We had to endure, and we were ready for another big success.
After scoring for a lead of 27:26, Igor Karachic was injured. He was out of the court with the medical team. Barcelona missed the next attack and Vardar had the ball. Dainis Kristopans was unstoppable and scored for a lead of 28:26.
The champion was obvious, and the match ended with a victory for Vardar of 29:27.