Aiming for that missing titleArticle
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Larvik’s Tonje Larsen aims for success in the EHF Champions League in order to add the last missing title to her collection of gold medals.

»EHF CL Channel »2010-11 Women's News

Aiming for that missing title

Larvik’s left-back Tonje Larsen has won every possible national team competition in her exceptional career, but at club level she is still missing one big title: first place in the prestigious EHF Champions League.

After her side won their home game against Itxako by two goals, she is one step closer to this goal. The victory gives the Norwegians a good chance of celebrating the biggest club success of Larvik in Pamplona this weekend.

Larsen, an excellent defence player was one of the main pillars in the victory over Itxako in the first leg final. She played an extraordinary match, defending well, scoring several long distance goals. She was top scorer with 8 goals.

In an interview with the 36 year-old reveals her secret for her great motivation at club level and looks forward with enormous enthusiasm to the second leg match in Spain. How do you feel after the first leg of the Final, did you expect a game like this against Itxako?

Tonje Larsen: We were prepared for a tough game, as Itxako are a strong team. We didn’t play as well as we know we can at our best level, but we were happy to win the game by two goals. You personally played a very strong game in the first game, scoring several amazing goals. What gives you the motivation to perform at such a high level?

Tonje Larsen: I always try to do my best. It is motivating to be part of a team with so many high quality players and good friends. To be in my first ever EHF Champions League Final gives me extra motivation. How do you see your side’s chances of securing the EHF Champions League trophy after winning narrowly by two goals? Are you and your team mates confident before the return match in Pamplona?

Tonje Larsen: Indeed, two goals are not a lot, but we always play to win. Are there any Spanish players that you need to pay more attention to in the return match or are they equally strong and dangerous in your opinion?

Tonje Larsen: In my opinion Itxaxo have a team with no weaknesses. They are strong in all positions and play very well as a team. What part of the game do you need to work on to be better, compared to the first leg?

Tonje Larsen: We need to improve the established attack and the counter attack part. We also had too many technical mistakes in the first leg. Your coach Tor Odvar Moen recently said that mental shape would be decisive in the second leg of the Final. Do you agree with him, and how do you prepare yourself after so many exciting finals and key games in your career for the return match in the EHF CL?

Tonje Larsen: I completely agree with Tor Odvar, the mental part will be very important in the return match. I prepare myself by watching videos and by analyzing the opponent. In addition I visualize what to do in different situations on the court.

TEXT: Márk Hegedüs