The first match the EuroFloorball Challenge 2018 was at the same time the first official international match which was played according to the new edition of the rules of the game 2018.
Local derby, when women’s teams CD El Calle and CUF Leganes played against each other. El Valle is the previous winner of the EFChallenge from 2016, when the women’s challenge was played for last time.
El Valle was controlling the game from the very early minutes of the game and never gave the initiative to Leganes. Easy 7-1 victory for El Valle over Leganes. The most efficient player was El Valle’s Paula Arenal Beltran by scoring two and assisting two goals for her team.
London Sharks v Utrecht
London Sharks and UFC Utrecht from the Netherlands started the men’s tournament. Men play in two groups in three days and the placement matches are played on Tuesday and Wednesday. The match was very equal and neither of the teams were able to control the game.
It took more than 30 minutes before Utrecht finally scored the first one and almost 20 minutes more to score the second one. 10 minutes to go and Sharks were two goals behind and decided to take a time out in order to plan how to get back to the game. Some six minutes before the end of the match London scored the first one and at 58.23 the second one, which eventually meant that the final result of the game was a 2-2 draw.
FC Milano v Phoenix Fireball
Phoenix had a real flash start for the game and after nine minutes they already had a relatively comfortable 3-0 lead. First period is always the first and Milano were still in the game without any visible problems and scored two by the end of the first period and Phoenix had a 3-2 lead. At 26.14 Milano was able to equalize, but just 30 seconds later Phoenix scored the fourth and had a 6-3 lead after two periods.
Third period didn’t change anything and Phoenix took an important 9-3 victory over Milano.
IFK Paris v El Escorial
The fourth and at the same time the last men’s match of the day was between Paris and El Escorial and they El Escorial comes also from the Madrid area. The game was quite fast from the beginning and El Escorial took the lead but Paris equalized. El Escorial had three power plays during the first period, but the team was somewhat ineffective and despite the fact that they controlled the ball the shots towards the opponents goal were missing.
During the second period El Escorial finally found the way to score and Paris couldn’t stop the Spaniards to score four more goals in the second period and to have quite convincing and comfortable 6-1 lead before the last period. El Escorial wins 8-3 and is now leading their group after the first day.
Panam v El Valle
El Valle already won their first match of the tournament against Leganes and now they were facing the French Panam United, which is participating to the EFChallenge for the first time. To measure the level in relatively warm arena would naturally be a challenge for both of the teams.
From the beginning of the game it was quite clear who had the control, El Valle was showing the way and they were obviously better prepared than Panam, even though they already had one game earlier today. Panam on the other hand just arrived to Madrid today, so that might have caused some lack of concentration. El Valle has now won both of their games after winning very convincingly against Panam 11-1 and took one step closer to win the tournament, but there are still two days and few games to be played and until the last buzz, nothing can be considered as secured.
All the results, standings and personal statistics can be checked from the EFCh2018 event page