The end of a dynasty

Stregspiller Sascha Staat Unplugged, News Leave a Comment

Eight major titles in 15 years, two triples, countless medals.  It’s been quite a ride for Claude Onesta, the former head coach of “Les Experts”.  He will go down as the most successful men’s national team coach of all time, there’s no question about it.  Having said that it feels a bit weird that he won’t have a chance to …

Between mountains and beaches

Stregspiller Sascha Staat Unplugged, News 1 Comment

Do you remember the EHF Euro 1998 in Italy? Yes, in Italy.  The tournament included just twelve teams back then, hosted by cities like Bolzano and Merano, where half of the people speak a strong German dialect, while the rest converse in Italian.  South Tyrol is a region of contrasts, but no matter what this particular tournament feels like it …

Underdogs no more

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Do you remember the 2014 Final 4 in Cologne?  I guess you do.  Kiel or Barcelona, Barcelona or Kiel, maybe Veszprem?  And SG Flensburg-Handewitt?  Bound for fourth place.  In the end the boys of Ljubomir Vranjes stunned the handball world – first shocking Barcelona and then archrival THW Kiel.  It was a weekend for the ages. But Flensburg is far …

A new dynasty in the making

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Just to let you know right away, I’m not a fan of the THW Kiel.  Actually I’m not a fan of any club.  I like some, but I’m far away from being a supporter.  But I love to see young and talented players develop into stars.  Stars that surprise us with their extraordinary skills, players that kids can admire and …

Third time is a charm – maybe not

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Hungary’s Veszprem already looked like the champion of Europe, but shockingly wasted a 9-goal lead in the most dramatic Champions League final to date, losing to Kielce in a penalty shoot-out.  It was a heartbreaking loss for the club and its fans, the “red Hungarian army”, who once again had traveled to Cologne to see their heroes win – finally. …

Jesper Noddesbo

New approach, same goals in Barcelona

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Although German outfit THW Kiel has emerged as a top threat to Barcelona’s throne as the biggest club in handball the Catalans are still number one, and maybe that’s not really a point of discussion.  But something has changed recently at the “Blaugrana”, where anything but first place is considered failure.  Well, at least when it comes to the Spanish …

Fit or not fit is the question

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Guess what, Rhein-Neckar Löwen weren’t too happy when the Champions League draw was held earlier this summer.  They will face a lot of beatable teams in their group, but not the most attractive ones.  Barcelona, Paris, Veszprem, Kiel and Flensburg all ended up in Group A.  The Lions will make it to the next stage, for sure.  And they might …

Cologne to remain a dream for Vardar

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From Kielce we move on to Macedonia – Skopje to be exact – in our preview of next season’s Champions League.  After Yugoslavia’s split up, the nation of Macedonia became one of the most interesting stories in the world of handball, while superstar Kiril Lazarov put the small country on the map with his outstanding performances over the years.  So …

Preparing the future, winning now

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I’ve seen a lot of handball games on location, especially in recent times.  Finals of all major tournaments like the EURO, the World Championship or even the Olympic games. Final matches of European club competitions like the EHF Cup or the Cup Winners Cup.  But none of them did come anywhere close to the dramatic ending of this year’s Champions …