Jan Gurri, one of those unique players that the Granollers academy offers from time to time, did not start the match against Goppingen because Antonio Rama preferred another combination on the front line (Antonio García, Reguart and Faruk), but when he took him out to complete the attack, his contribution was simply colossal: nine goals without a miss (including the last one), defense, ball recoveries, and leaving the Germans without the giant Blagotinsek. Only 20 years old and already a Spanish international, Gurri was the top of a solid pyramid as a block for the Valles team to achieve 31-29 (16-18) and get into the final and fight for another title 27 years after the last.
In the quarterfinals, Granollers turned the European League upside down by eliminating none other than Flensburg, the organizer of the Final Four, in Germany. Yesterday, when a German party was expected on Sunday, the Spanish team messed it up again. He came back from three goals that Goppingen came to rent, took the lead in the 51st minute, and got into today’s final (6:00 p.m., Esport3 and DAZN) against Fuchse Berlin.
Although Gurri takes the laurels, this does not hide the strenuous defensive work and few troops from Valles: the goalkeeper Rangel was a wall (Marc Guardia, also in the minute he played!), and Rey and Amigó battled like titans in the center of the 6-0. Two changes in attack and defense seemed like suicide because Goppingen hit on the counter goal very quickly; but in the end it was effective, because he maintained the freshness of Salinas and Faruk (although he also went through the defense) to answer in attack, and finish with more ease than the Germans.
Antonio García was always a leader, Yusuf the unbalancing left-hander, and Salinas a kind of mouse looking for invisible holes in that need to avenge his brother Rodrigo for that defeat in a continental final against this rival. Franco and Torriani, the wingers, had no rest, and David Roca had a testimonial but essential contribution. That cocktail, with an indisputable mobility in the last minutes to compensate for the physical difference, was decisive for Spanish handball to be in the first European final of the season in a match that was always balanced and controlled.