Neagu reaches 100 as CSM seal quarter-finals berthArticle
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PLAY-OFF REVIEW: After 52 minutes, SCM Ramnicu Valcea boasted a seven-goal gap, yet CSM Bucuresti’s experience helped them limit the damage

»EHF CL Channel »2020-21 Women's News

Miracles do happen in handball and the second leg of the DELO EHF Champions League play-off between CSM Bucuresti and SCM Ramnicu Valcea was close to providing one.

But as costly misses from Valcea ushered CSM Bucuresti back into the game, CSM's nine-goal advantage from the first leg would prove crucial as Valcea won the Romanian derby 27:21.

CSM Bucuresti (ROU) vs SCM Ramnicu Valcea (ROU) 21:27 (11:15)
First leg: 33:24, CSM won 54:51 on aggregate

  • starting with a 3:0 run, Valcea went all-in at the beginning and shocked CSM to take a six-goal lead, 15:9, after 27 minutes
  • led once against by a majestic Cristina Neagu, who scored six goals in the first half, CSM weathered the storm 
  • CSM had an off evening in both defence and in attack, where they converted only 52 percent of their shots in the first half
  • Valcea deployed a 4:0 run, as CSM failed to score for almost 10 minutes, to jump to a 24:17 lead
  • in the end the visitors paid the price for turnovers and misses (including four penalties – two each from Iryna Glybko and Evgenija Minevskaja) 
  • CSM will face CSKA in the quarter-finals

Neagu hits the 100-goal mark this season

CSM’s win would have not been possible without two amazing games from Neagu. Across the two legs, the 32-year-old left back scored 24 of CSM’s 54 goals against Valcea, her former team, to become the first player to score 100 goals in the DELO EHF Champions League this season.

The Romanian superstar, the all-time goal scorer at the EHF EURO, is three goals ahead of Slovenian right back Ana Gros.

Post-match quotes

Florentin Pera, SCM Ramnicu Valcea coach: "I am very satisfied about this game, we didn’t give up and everybody fought today and played at a very high level. We had the chance to win by 10 goals today but we missed some penalty throws. I want to congratulate Daciana Hosu as well as she is a very young player and she had a great game today. 

Daciana Hosu, SCM Ramnicu Valcea goalkeeper: "Congrats to CSM for the qualification and the good fight that they showed today. I am happy about the good fight we put in today and I am proud of my team. I really wanted to show that goalkeepers can help the team and this game the defence helped me a lot, hence the big number of saves." 

Adrian Vasile, CSM Bucuresti coach: "The big picture is that we are the team that qualified. I am very happy we could manage the end of the game and that we had the brains and the handball skills to qualify. The fact that CSM Bucuresti qualified for the DELO EHF Champions League quarter-finals for the sixth time shows the quality that our team has. I really hope that we are the team that will go to the DELO EHF FINAL4." 

Dragana Cvijic, CSM Bucuresti line player: "Everything was hard for us with corona a few weeks ago and all the injuries, but I am happy we won. We want to win the Champions League but we have to take it step by step, so the next game against CSKA is the one that we have to think about." 

TEXT: Adrian Costeiu