Game 14 (M): 18:20, Group A, SPAIN 7 MONTENEGRO 9
Quarters: 1-3, 1-2, 2-1, 3-3
Referees: Massimiliano CAPUTI (ITA), Torsten BOCK (GER)
Extra Man: ESP: 0/4. MNE: 2/4
Pen: MNE: 1/1
SPAIN: Inaki AGUILAR, Mario GARCIA, Eric MARSAL (1), Francisco FERNANDEZ, Guillermo MOLINA, Marc MINGUELL (2), Mark ROCA, Albert ESPANOL, Xavier VALLES (2), Felipe PERRONE (1), Ivan PEREZ, Javier GARCIA (1), Daniel LOPEZ. Head Coach: Rafael AGUILAR.
MONTENEGRO: Denis SEFIK, Drasko BRGULJAN, Aleksandar RADOVIC, Damjan DANILOVIC (1), Nikola VUKCEVIC (1), Milan TICIC (1), Filip KLIKOVAC, Nikola JANOVIC (2), Dragan DRASKOVIC, Darko BRGULJAN (2), Antonio PETROVIC (1), Predrag JOKIC, Milos SCEPANOVIC. Coach: Petar POROBIC.
This was the match of the day. The superstar Montenegrins against the Spaniards who promised so much but it came down to the power of the lob rather than sheer speed and power. The belligerence of the teams was evident throughout as both decided they could win the game. But Spanish supporters might not have thought it possible for some time as the Montenegrins dominated most of the first half, keeping Spain scoreless for 13 minutes. The third period opened with GARCIA clawing one back only to have DANILOVIC score on extra for 6-3. MINGUELL scored his second, this time on extra to close the three-quarter mark 6-4. VALLES created havoc when his shot at the top of the fourth just sneaked across the line, despite the protestations of the Montenegrin players. More than four minutes later MARSAL equalised with a score on extra from the deep right, squeaking under SEFIK’s left arm. By this stage Montenegro had only scored one goal in 17 minutes! Darko BRGULJAN reined in a rebound off the post just after the exclusion period to take the edge at 2:23. Then VALLES thought he must have been on extra as he managed to find the post position and accepted a high pass, which he dragged into goal, for 7-7. The huge crowd thought this was going to be a draw but no-one counted on Montenegro’s determination and pride. However, it was not the raw power but the hopeful and humble lob that had the walls reverberating with noise. PETROVIC was four metres wide of the goal and less than four metres from the back line when he lobbed for 8-7. PEREZ turned the ball over at the far end and Montenegro had another chance. TICIC opened his tournament scoring with a lob from seven metres and out wide, that destroyed AGUILAR and his team-mates. It’s not a goal he will forget or even repeat, possibly! The true figure for the extra-man count saw Spain scoring just one from nine and Montenegro converting two from 13. Spain scored at 47.1% and Montenegro at 37.5% but having extra shots helps.