No chance for NürnbergArticle
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The first home defeat for Nürnberg in the CL means nearly the end of all dreams.

No chance for Nürnberg

"This was modern and very fast handball. Simply good.”

Postnova&Co. still have some chance for the semi-finalsNormally Herbert Müller, coach of 1. FC Nürnberg, talks about his team with these words. On Saturday evening Müller expressed his respect towards the opponents.

31:39 (20:22) was written on the scoreboard after 60 minutes of top quality handball as Nürnberg lost their first home match in this year’s CL. Although they fought until the end, the German champions did not have a chance against Togliatti, the Russian runner-up of last season.

Especially Lada goalkeeper, Maria Sidorova, and the Russian defence were too strong for the Germans.

“But I’m not unsatisfied. Before the CL season we never expected to come so far and we still know that our young players can learn a lot in this competition,” said Müller afterwards.

His team played well in the first half despite a bad and nervous start. The match was very close until the 27th minute, when Nadezda Muravyeva und Natalia Kurbanova hit the net twice and Lada were in the lead by 20:18. The gap remained until the break, 20:22.

Then the Lada express went on as Nürnberg made too many mistakes in offence, and the defence had too many “holes” in it. Togliatti took a five-goal lead (27:22) despite FCN goalkeeper, Marianna Gubova, making excellent saves in this stage.

But on the other hand, Sidorova was like a “wall” and the Russian attack was much more successful.As the gap increased to seven goals (28:35) Müller took his green time out card to take his last chance to turn the match. But in then end Lada showed more determination and celebrated their first victory in the Main Round.

As Togliatti can still hope to reach the semi-finals, the chances of Nürnberg dropped nearly to zero.

“We hope to enjoy our last three matches against world class opponents and let’s see what we are able to do,” said Müller knowing that his team now need three surprises to go through to the next stage.

Next Saturday Nürnberg will play - again at home - against the number one of the group, Győr, while Lada will meet the Romanian champions on home court.

The top scorer of Nürnberg was Ania Rösler with seven goals, while Lada’s world class centre back, Liudmila Postnova, scored eight.

TEXT: Björn Pazen