KIF Kolding with a ticket to European eliteArticle
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The emerging Danish powerhouse won the main round of the domestic league to clinch the berth in the next season of the VELUX EHF Champions League
»2012-13 Men's News

KIF Kolding with a ticket to European elite

KIF Kolding have reached their first goal. This week the team managed to qualify for the group phase of the VELUX EHF Champions League next season.

A 30:26 win away against EHF Cup colleagues Team Tvis Holstebro was enough for KIF to secure the first place in the Danish league with one round left. KIF are four points ahead of the current participants in the European top flight Bjerringbro-Silkeborg and can therefore not be overtaken, when the two teams meet on the last match day next Wednesday.

Winning the league does not make KIF Danish champions, though, as the championship is going to be decided in the upcoming play-offs, but as Denmark have two places in the Champions League next season, the champions as well as the league winners qualify, and that gives the KIF the ticket already at this point.

“We are very happy,” was the immediate comment from head coach Peter Bredsdorff-Larsen to, as the access to the premier continental club competition had been secured. What does it mean to the team and to the club that the qualification for the VELUX EHF Champions League is now a fact?

Peter Bredsdorff-Larsen: It means a lot to everyone in the club that already here at the middle of March we are sure to play in the Champions League next season. It is very important that we can send this message to our entire organisation and to our sales department. Now we can start planning ahead and develop for the future  Would you say this project has proved its sustainability through this achievement?

Peter Bredsdorff-Larsen: After we have played 25 matches so far in the Danish league and have lost only five points, I would say it has. I am glad that Denmark have two teams in the Champions League once again, so that it is also possible to reward stability and hard work during a whole season with a ticket for the group phase. Many people in Denmark have been skeptical of this project. Do you feel that you have silenced some of those now?

Peter Bredsdorff-Larsen: We all have our own way of doing things. Being a KIF Kolding København player is not always easy, but right now it is. We are all very happy right now.  With AG København reaching the VELUX EHF FINAL4 last year as an exception, Danish teams have not been used to making it any further in this competition than the round of the last 16 for many years. Do you think you have the team who can get further than that in the tournament?

Peter Bredsdorff-Larsen: I have to admit that I have not been thinking that far ahead yet. Right now we are simply happy to be back in the Champions League, but I am sure that with the team we will have next season who can make its mark in the competition. Does that mean reinforcements for next season?

Peter Bredsdorff-Larsen: First of all I would like to emphasise that I am very content with the team we have this season, and I am happy that the vast majority of our current players are also going to be with us next season. However, we want to develop and improve all the time, and I am sure that we will have a team next season who can compete in the Champions League too.

Photo: Frank Cilius

TEXT: Peter Bruun / br