Györ hope to make it eighth time luckyArticle
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A season of change has brought success to Györ, who are just one step away from finally winning a European title
 

Györ hope to make it eighth time lucky

Győri Audi ETO KC reached the final of the Women’s EHF Champions League for the second successive season after their narrow aggregate win over Oltchim Rm. Valcea.

Last season’s final ended in defeat to Buducnost. Both teams were level on goals (54:54) at the end of the second leg, but the Montenegrin team took the trophy after scoring more away goals, 27 to Györ’s 25.

This defeat saw a wave of change in Györ, beginning with the arrival of Spanish coach Ambros Martín, who took charge of the club after arriving from Itxako, signing a three-year contract. The arrival of the new coach also saw an overhaul of players.

Martin brought French international Raphaëlle Tervel with him and she quickly became one of the key members of the team in defence.

World-class goalkeeper, Katalin Pálinger, retired at the end of last season, which led to Orsolya Herr coming back to the team and sharing the goalkeeping role with Katrine Lunde Haraldsen.

Orsolya Vérten left after ten years with the club to join domestic rivals, Ferencváros and was replaced by Ivett Szepesi. Ana Gros moved to Thüringer in Germany, while Viktória Rédei-Soós came to Győr from Hypo NÖ.

Despite the influx of new and talented players, Martin was not taking the upcoming task lightly.

“Talent is not enough. You should play with your heart to be successful. We will try it again together to reach what we want,” said Martín at his first press conference.

Győr’s main target for this season is to win the Women’s EHF Champions League, and they have powered through the majority of their opponents, going unbeaten throughout both group stages.

Györ have already met Larvik, their opponent in the final. Both matches were ended with a six-goal victory for the Hungarians (18:24 and 30:24).

However, Györ insist that they will not be thinking about past dominance when it comes to the final.

“Of course, we know that we have won all of our 12 matches so far. But we are not thinking about it day and night.

“We are not feeling the stress because we are always focusing to the next task,” said goalkeeper Orsolya Herr.

The semi-final against Oltchim Rm. Valcea was nothing new for the Hungarian club, it was the third time that the clubs have met in the semi-finals (after 2010 and 2012).

Győr won the first leg by two goals in Romania, but the return match saw their 13 match unbeaten streak end.

The one-goal defeat was certainly not how Györ had anticipated the game to be, but it was enough to secure a place in the final for them.

“Something has changed in my life today. I haven’t seen any other team fighting like this,” said a delighted Ambros Martín after the match.

The Hungarians can now look forward to their eighth European cup final and they will be desperately hunting for a win after seven defeats from seven finals (four EHF Cup, one Cup Winners’ Cup and two EHF Champions League). They would like to break their duck and finally claim a European trophy.


TEXT: Ildikó Balogh / cor
 
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