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07.03.2018, 08:16
Coaches come and go, while France celebrate gold
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THE LOOK AHEAD: With rounds 3 and 4 of the Women’s EHF EURO 2018 Qualification throwing off in two weeks, we tell you what has changed in European women’s handball since the first two rounds were played last October
 

Coaches come and go, while France celebrate gold

The qualification for the EHF EURO 2018 in France enters rounds 3 and 4 on Wednesday, 21 March. 28 matches will be played until 25 March and all fixtures are staged as double-headers with the same two teams facing each other in home and away matches.

Schedule & Standings

Your ehfTV live schedule for the qualification

After two rounds have been played, ten teams have the maximum of four points on their accounts – but many things occurred in the meantime.

Here is the update on the most important changes:

  • Germany starts with a new coach: Dutch Henk Groener took over from Michael Biegler who had announced earlier that his stint would end with the World Championship 2017. Following Germany’s Last 16 exit and ahead of the qualification double-header against Spain, eight experienced players have retired from the German national team.
  • Switzerland also have a new coach: Dane Martin Albertsen, coach of German women’s champions SG BBM Bietigheim, took over the position from another Dane, Jesper Holmris. Switzerland have zero points after two qualification matches and face Ukraine at the end of March.
  • One national team coach announced a change on club level: Romania coach Ambros Martin, who steered Györi AUDI ETO KC to three EHF Champions league titles since 2013. After six years at Györ, the Spaniard will not extend his contract. Rumours have it that he will take over Rostov-Don – and coincidentally, Romania now face Russia in the EHF EURO 2018 Qualification.
  • Swedish coach Per Johansson stays where he is and prolonged his contract with Montenegro’s women’s national team until 2020. Initially, the successor of Dragan Adzic was only to stay at the helm for the duration of World Championship 2017. Montenegro face the equally unbeaten Poland in group 2 – and with Katarina Bulatovic and Jovanka Radicevic Johansson nominated two of Montenegro’s most experienced players for these matches.

Trefilov with plenty of choice

  • Norway’s top star Nora Mørk will miss the qualification. The right back tore her ACL in a Women’s EHF Champions League match in February and will be sidelined for the rest of the season. German playmaker Kim Naidzinavicius is sidelined with the same injury sustained at the World Championship 2017. It remains open whether she will be able to stage a comeback this season.
  • Russian coach Evgeny Trefilov caters for all possibilities ahead of the double-header against Romania. Trefilov nominated no less than 34(!) players for the preparation camp in Togliatti – but eventually he will need to select his final 16.
  • And last but not least, our congratulations go to the EHF EURO 2018 hosts France. They won the World Championship in Germany in December and became the first side besides hosts Japan to qualify for the World Championship 2019.

For all fans who can't wait: Tickets for the Women's EHF EURO 2018 (29 November to 16 December) have already gone on sale


TEXT: Björn Pazen / ts
 
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