Germany win Men's 20 EHF EURO after thrilling final against SwedenArticle
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REVIEW: After winning the Men's 18 EHF EURO 2012, Germany's 'Generation 1994' once again topped a European Championship podium. Spain beat Denmark 29:27 to take bronze

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Germany win Men's 20 EHF EURO after thrilling final against Sweden

Two years ago, at the Men's 18 EHF EURO 2012, Germany and Sweden faced each other in the final for the first time.

The score had stood at 26:26 after 60 minutes of play, and Germany needed extra time to outplay their opponents 30:29.

On Sunday night, at the final of Men's 20 EHF EURO 2014 when the same generation of players took to the court and the two teams met again, 26 goals in 60 minutes were just enough as Sweden only scored 24 and were once again left with silver.

Earlier in the day Spain had beaten Denmark 29:27 to win bronze.

"This match was absolutely worthy of a final," said German head coach Markus Baur. "We made a few too many mistakes in the first half, and in the second half Sweden became better and better. But when they were about to decide the game, our goalkeeper showed two amazing saves."

Germany started strong in the final against Sweden. After nine minutes had been played, they had denied their opponents a single goal while scoring four themselves.

By the 24th minute they had slightly extended this lead to 12:7, but Sweden answered with three quick successive goals and at half-time the German lead had melted to two goals at 13:11.

Despite some strong Swedish efforts at the beginning of the second half, Germany held on to their lead until the final 10 minutes began.

In the 51st minute the score stood at 22:21 for Germany, five minutes later Sweden had levelled the game at 23:23 and even took the lead for the first time in the entire game at 24:23.

A penalty, converted by Fabian Wiede, brought Germany back in the game, and the last two goals of the match belonged again to the German team while Sweden weren't able to score anymore.

Spain third time lucky

In the bronze medal match youth world champions Denmark had the better start as they led by four goals midway through the first half.

But Spain did not think about surrendering at this early stage and reduced the gap to one goal at half-time, when the score stood at 15:14 for Denmark.

After 37 minutes had ben played, Spain took the lead for the first time, tightened their grip on it and did not let go until the end, eventually celebrating bronze and a 29:27 win.

"This was our third chance to win a bronze medal (Spain had lost the matches for third place at the Men's 18 EHF EURO 2012 and at the Men's Youth World Championships 2013), now we won it and this makes us very happy."

TEXT: EHF / ts