Ambri-Piotta or Sparta Prague?
Article - Ambri-Piotta or Sparta Prague?
HC Ambri-Piotta and Sparta Prague are set to clash in the final of the 94th Spengler Cup. For the Ticinesi a tournament victory would be the biggest success in club history, for the Czechs a milestone on their way back to the international elite.
In Ambri-Piotta and Sparta Prague the two teams, which had also won their respective groups, Torriani and Cattini, will meet in the final. In 2019 the Ticinesi missed qualifying for the final by a hair with a 3-2 overtime loss against Ocelari Trinec. Now Ambri is reaching for the cup. Only the Czech traditional club Sparta Prague can prevent that. It won the Spengler Cup in 1962 and 1963. In 2010 the team from Prague lost the final against HC Davos 2-0. The outcome of today’s final appears completely open.
“Up to this point, the Spengler Cup has gone exactly the way we had envisioned”, noted Ambri forward Nando Eggenberger on late Friday evening after the 5-0 semi-final win over Davos. “Now we will do everything to win the tournament. Sparta Prague undoubtedly has a great team. With our aggressiveness, our power, and our tempo we are capable of overcoming the Czechs as well.” The match will be special for Ambri’s Czech forward Michal Spacek. For his cousin, Jan Buchtele, plays for Sparta Prague. “During the game I know no friends, only the win counts”, answered Spacek when asked about the situation. Spacek currently sits atop the Spengler Cup scoring leaderboard with five points (1 goal/4 assists). “Of course, it would be nice to finish the tournament as the top scorer”, he explains. “But I will not focus on that. I give my best in every game. It is much more important that I win the tournament with Ambri.”
“That was quite a struggle. We are happy to have turned the game after a 3-0 deficit”, said Sparta’s Vladimir Sobotka on late Friday afternoon after the 4-3 victory in the semifinals against Orebro HK. The 35-year-old forward with several years of NHL and KHL experience has made no secret that his team will give it all to win the tournament. “We came to Davos to do our best. Now we are in the final. Of course, we now want to take the trophy back to the Czech Republic.” Sobotka says balance is his team’s biggest asset. Sparta Prague’s semi-final delivered the proof: each of the four lines scored one goal against Orebro.
Text: Spengler Cup - Onlineredaktion Foto: Keystone