Csoknyai: We Had No ChanceArticle
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István Csoknyai, assistant coach of Veszprém admits that they had no chance to reach the semi-finals against a superb Kiel.

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Csoknyai: We Had No Chance

MKB Veszprém had to say goodbye to the international competition this year after their Champions League quarterfinal with THW Kiel. The assistant coach of the Hungarian champion, István Csoknyai analysed the reasons for the defeat.

Eurohandball.com: How do you feel after dropping out of the Champions League?

István Csoknyai: Terrible. We were optimistic after our three-goal victory on home ground, since we showed a great play at the end, so we were confident about our chances in the return leg. We thought that if we play bravely and aggressively, we can go through. Unfortunately, Kiel dominated the game in the return leg. They had amassed such a significant lead between the 10th and the 20th minutes, which I believe had a great impact on the final result. In the second half, when we managed to close the gap to five goals, we even had a chance to crack Kiel. In this period, Peric was saving one-on-one and on penalties a couple of times, but we failed to score on three attacks in a row. We made several technical errors which Kiel capitalised on, just as an experienced team should. It is very hard to admit, but the better team advanced to the next round. We knew that we had a very strong opponent to face, but I had hoped that we could beat them a little more on home ground at least. Having seen and analysed the return leg however, I do not think we had a real chance.

Eurohandball.com: How would you evaluate your CL-campaign in general this season?

István Csoknyai: Seeing the strengths and weaknesses, I would like to see Portland and Kiel in the final. It would be some sort of consolation for us, too. Our team have fulfilled the minimum requirement since we qualified for the quarterfinals. The duel with Kolding brought great glory for us. On the other hand, we were measured in the quarterfinals and were found lacking, unfortunately. Our target was to go into the semi-finals, but it would have been too difficult for our team, which is filled with young players. Kiel have been playing together for nearly three years, building the team systematically. I think we should walk the same path if we want to be more successful.

Eurohandball.com: What was the decisive factor in your opinion in the last two games?

István Csoknyai: Gergő Iváncsik was injured, Buday transferred to Germany, and Sesum, the player we contracted to replace him, was injured too. So we had some positions in the team that were not filled very well. Our goalkeepers could not add enough to our game to be successful in the return leg. We made countless technical errors in both matches, and we were not prepared for Kiel’s mercilessly fast game, no matter how hard we tried. Besides, we missed such chances that we never do normally.

TEXT: Ildikó Balogh