“Sorry for this, Herbert!”Article
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Győr qualify for the semi-finals with a 25-36 victory in Nürnberg.

“Sorry for this, Herbert!”

After many sensational results, 1. FC Nürnberg are out of the race in the Champions League: their second home defeat within a week means for the German champions that they stand no more chance to reach the semi-finals.

Beck flying towards goalThe match against Hungarian champions, Győr, was nearly the same as the game against Togliatti seven days ago: Nürnberg fought hard, but the opponents took the points. After the eight-goal defeat against Lada, Nürnberg lost by eleven goals this time. The 25:36 (13:18) against Györ means that the guests extended their great series to 10 consecutive victories in the CL this season.  

With eight points Győr are in the semi-finals, while Lada (4 points) and Valcea (3) will both play against the current leaders in the last two rounds.

Győr were dominant in Nürnberg and took a well-deserved victory. Until an injury in the 33rd minute, goalkeeper Katalin Pálinger showed an outstanding performance with a lot of decisive saves. Already at the beginning Nürnberg missed too many chances and Győr took the lead very early.  

A huge fan club travelled with Győr to BavariaAfter eleven minutes it was 6:3 and Győr were leading by 18:13 at halftime – although Nürnberg had good chances to equalise in the meantime.

Besides Pálinger, it was the Romanian backcourt player Aurelia Bradeanu (eight goals) and former World Player of the Year, Anita Görbicz (12 goals), who made the difference to the host.  

Győr were obviously the better and played a great match. We did not have a chance against world class players such as Pálinger or Görbicz,” said FCN coach Herbert Müller. “The easiest conclusion would be that we made too many mistakes in offence,” he concluded.

Nürnberg were only able to come closer as Pálinger had to leave the field after stepping on a ball. Reserve goalkeeper, Orsolya Herr, could not show a similar performance in her first minutes on court. But as the Hungarian attack was still much quicker and their defence was also much stronger, FCN did not have a chance to win.  

The best Nürnberg player was Petra Popluharova with six goals, as the “normal“ top scorer Ania Rösler had many problems and scored only once in 60 minutes.

Herbert and Spiridon were opponents this timeIn the 43rd minute Nürnberg could still hope as they reduced the gap to four goals (19:23), but afterwards they were overrun by the “Győr express”.  

Coach Csaba Konkoly was impressed:

“We knew that Nürnberg play fast and modern handball, so we had to be concentrated for 60 minutes. But with the saves of Pálinger in the first half, we gained a lot of confidence.”

It was a special match for Simona Spiridon (Győr), who plays for the Austrian national team coached by Herbert Müller:  

“It always very tricky to play against Herbert, but I always want to win. Sorry for this, Herbert!”

TEXT: Björn Pazen