Reichmann: You cannot compare those two titlesArticle
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INTERVIEW: After a sensational EHF EURO gold medal, Kielce’s right wing took the even less expected VELUX EHF FINAL4 trophy

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Reichmann: You cannot compare those two titles

At the EHF EURO 2016 in Poland, he was the best German scorer to steer his team to the gold medal and became best right wing of the All-star team, on Sunday - two days after his 28th birthday - Tobias Reichmann was part of Vive Tauron Kielce’s miracle win at the VELUX EHF FINAL4 at Cologne.

Netting in eight times in the epic 39:38 win after extra-time and 7-metre shootout against MVM Veszprem, Reichmann was one key to rally back from a nine-goal deficit 15 minutes before the end.

For Reichmann, who transferred to Kielce in 2014, it was the third EHF Champions League trophy after winning the competition with THW Kiel in 2010 and 2012 - but that time his role and importance for the winners was not as high as now.

In this interview with Reichmann talks about two titles in five months, the crazy final and his challenge to get a nomination for Rio. Looking back on the run-down of the final - what went through your head when Kielce were down by nine with only 15 minutes to play?

Tobias Reichmann: We were out, we were down, we were beaten - and every ten seconds I took a look to the scoreboard, hoping this match would end soon. But then we had this initial ignition - it was not a single action - but maybe Szmal’s two, three saves. From that moment on, everything was running in the right direction, while Veszprem were completely off the path. And then we were rolling, like in ecstasy. Did you ever catch up a nine goal deficit in your handball career?

Tobias Reichmann: Yes, last season in the Champions League we were down by eleven at the start of the second half, but it was a group match without any significance, not a final against a team like Veszprem. What were the reasons for the weak first 45 minutes?

Tobias Reichmann: We were over-motivated, maybe we were hyped by the atmosphere and our win against Paris in the semi-final the day before. But then we managed to turn the tides, and I even do not know exactly how we managed to do so. I am so proud on my team and even more on our great fans, who always supported us and contributed to our triumph. If someone in the New Year’s Eve would have told you that five months later you are EHF EURO gold medalist and VELUX EHF Champions League winner - what would you have told him?

Tobias Reichmann: …that he or she must be completely crazy. I would have shaken my head and would have gone away. When you compare being on the winners‘ podium at Krakow and at Cologne - which title was the better one?

Tobias Reichmann: You simply cannot compare them, although they both were quite surprising. Right after this final and right after coming from the podium you cannot compare it, a national team is different to club team. But what I know for sure is that both celebrations are historic. What does this Champions League title mean for Polish handball, mainly after missing the EURO semi-final on home ground?

Tobias Reichmann: We all have shown and proved everybody what we are able to and capable of. A lot of people had said, our team is too old and so on. Now we made the biggest ever result for Polish handball. Can Tobi Reichmann make the treble at the Olympic Games?

Tobias Reichmann: At first, I need to get nominated by our national team coach. Only 14 players are in the Olympic squads, and I do not know if I am among them. Dagur Sigurdsson will have a really hard choice. Some players, who had missed the EHF EURO due to injuries, are back, so you never know.

But regardless if I will play at Rio or not, Germany will not go there to hand over gifts. We have proved our potential at the EURO and at Rio we want to play an important role.

TEXT: Björn Pazen / br