Roaring CSM comfortably beat MetzArticle
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QUARTER-FINAL REVIEW: With Cristina Neagu in flawless form, CSM Bucuresti are in Women's EHF FINAL4 contention with an overwhelming 34:21 win against Metz.

Roaring CSM comfortably beat Metz

A new coach who breathed new life into the Romanian powerhouse, this is what CSM needed and Per Johansson was brought back to lead the "Tigresses" as he did one year ago, when they beat FTC-Rail Cargo Hungaria.

But was the scenario about to repeat itself? It was, and it only got better for the Romanian side, who cruised past their opponents, taking a 13-goal lead into the second leg.

  • Cristina Neagu was in superb form for CSM, scoring ten times
  • Per Johansson enjoyed a stellar debut on CSM's bench this season, after he replaced Helle Thomsen eight days ago
  • The Neagu-Gullden duo was key for CSM, the two backs complemented each other perfectly

CSM Bucuresti (ROU) vs Metz Handball (FRA) 34:21 (19:13)

A four-save tally for Paula Ungureanu helped CSM take a 6:2 lead after only ten minutes, as the Romanian team fired from all cylinders, with Cristina Neagu and Isabelle Gullden in superb form.

But Metz showed they were no pushovers. A well taken time-out by coach Emmanuel Mayonnade saw the French side cut the gap to only one goal, 10:9, as the unstoppable right back Ana Gros scored seven times in the first 20 minutes of the game.

As the fast-paced rhythm continued to exhaust the two sides, CSM's depth and strength was there to be seen. There was little surprise, therefore, that the Romanian team took control and with Neagu playing well with six first half goals, the hosts had a 19:13 lead at half-time.

Key 5:0 run to land a huge win

It should have been a dream start for Metz, after CSM had their first suspension in the second minute of the second half. Instead, the Romanian side built a 5:0 run, after Metz failed to score for the first 11 minutes.

With a ten-goal advantage secured, CSM did not back off and went full-throttle, while Metz lost their rhythm and missed shot after shot from all positions.

In the end there was nothing Metz could do to prevent a 34:21 loss, which will probably see CSM through barring a miracle comeback from the French side when the second leg takes place next Sunday.

TEXT: Adrian Costeiu /at