Handball WM 2017 Frankreich: In der „deutschen Gruppe“ C bei der Handball-Weltmeisterschaft findet nach Deutschlands Sieg über Ungarn das nächste Schlüsselspiel im Kampf um den Gruppensieg statt. Kroatien als möglicher stärkster Gegner der „bad boys“ muss sich gegen Ungarn beweisen.
13.01.2017 – France Handball / SPORT4FINAL / Frank Zepp:
Handball WM 2017 Frankreich:
Group A, Nantes, Hall XXL: 14:45 Brazil vs Poland
Brazil’s fifteen goal-loss against France in the opening game was its biggest in seven years. The last time the Auriverde were defeated so badly was at the 2009 World Championship, when Norway beat them 39:21.
The last time the two teams played against each other was at the last Olympic Games in Rio. On their home court, Brazil defeated Poland by two goals, 34:32. This was the first time Brazil defeated Poland in an official competition.
Brazilian, Jose Guilherme de Toledo, will face five of his Wisla Plock (POL) club teammates when he steps onto the court against Poland.
17:45 Norway vs Russia
It’s been six years since the two teams played against each other in an official competition. On aggregate, Russia won four times and were defeated three times. Interesting to note that Norway won the last two confrontations, in 2008 and 2010.
This game will see the extremes compete. Russia features among its ranks Alexandr Chernoivanov, the second oldest player in Group A, who will turn 38 in February, while the youngest player in Group A, 19-year-old Magnus Rod, wears the red of Norway.
For now, Norway have the best defense in the competition, with only conceding twenty goals. Their goalkeepers, Espen Christensen and Torbjorn Bergerud only however made five saves each against Poland.
Group B, Metz, Arènes
14:45 Iceland vs Slovenia
Slovenia have the youngest average in Group B at just 25.6 years – their oldest player is 33-year-old right back David Miklavcic and their youngest is right wing Blaz Janc at just 20 years old
Two of the Iceland squad of 16 play their club handball in France – Asgeir Hallgrimsson (right back) for Nimes and Gudmundur Helgason (centre back) for Cesson Rennes
Iceland goalkeeper Bjorgvin Pall Gustavsson scored his fifth goal in 181 matches for his country when his full-court shot, went in against Spain in their opening France 2017 match
17:45 Tunisia vs Spain
Victor Tomas (ESP) plays club handball with Wael Jallouz (TUN) for FC Barcelona: “We exchange texts and I will try to get him a little bit unfocused for the game [laughs]. Definitely, I will try to do that, but I think he can’t do that with me [laughs].”
Tarak and Wael Jallouz are brothers playing for Tunisia, along with the other Group B brothers from FYR Macedonia.
Club Africain left back Khaled Haj Youssef would have found it hard to celebrate his 28th birthday – it was yesterday, and Tunisia lost to FYR Macedonia, but he will be hoping to help teammate Mohamed Soussi celebrate his 24th birthday on the 17th January when Tunisia face Slovenia.
20:45 Angola vs FYR Macedonia
38-year-old goalkeeper Kiril Kolev (MKD) is the oldest player in Group B.
FYR add to the amount of brothers in Group B with two sets – Kiril and Filip Lazarov, Velko and Nikola Markoski.
All but two players for Angola play their club handball at home with right wing Edvaldo Esmael Ferreira playing in Tunisia for Etoile Sportive du Sahel and left wing Elias Nogueira Antionio playing in Portugal for Associacao Atletica Aguas Santas.
Group C, Rouen, Kindarena
20:45 Hungary vs Croatia
Four years ago, in the preliminary round of the World Championship in Spain, Croatia beat the Hungarians clearly 30:21 – to finally finish with the bronze medal, while Hungary ranked seventh in the end.
“Hungary, in my opinion, are even stronger than Germany, so we focused in our preparation on our first opponent Saudi-Arabia and Hungary,” said Croatian head coach Zeljko Babic, adding: “They have two high-class goalkeepers and an extremely movable defence. We are absolutely aware of their danger.”
In his second job, as coach of 2015 and 2016 Champions League finalists, Veszprem, Hungarian Spanish-born head coach Javier Sabate is the boss of four Croatian players – Mirko Alilovic, Renato Sulic, Ivan Sliskovic and Marko Kopljar – and none of them were nominated by Croatian coach Babic for the 2017 World Championship in France. Last season, both coaches faced each other with their club teams – Veszprem and Meshkov Brest (BLR, former Babic team) – in the semi-final of the SEHA-Liga: Veszprem won 24:21 and finally took their second trophy for 2015.
Group D, Paris, AccorHotels Arena
20:45 Egypt vs Denmark
The two teams played each other three times in the past and Denmark won the three contests. The first two meetings took place at the World Championship, in 2003 and 2009, and the third one was played very recently, on 7 January. Denmark won this friendly game by 10 (36:26).
Egypt owns the overall attendance record for a handball match. It was established in 1999, when Sweden won the Championship final against Russia (25:24) in front of 25.000 spectators. This record could be beaten during the 2017 World Championship, as Stade Pierre-Mauroy has a capacity of 27.500 when converted into an indoor arena.
The World Championship is the only big tournament that Denmark has never won. The Danish team won the EURO twice, in 2008 and 2012, and the Olympic Games last summer in Rio.