All to play for in balanced Group DArticle
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GROUPS C/D PREVIEW: No team is sure of their future in Women’s EHF Champions League 2018/19 Group D, as there is a scenario where all four sides could finish the group with six points

All to play for in balanced Group D

While it may sound farfetched, a second draw between SG BBM Bietigheim and Vipers Kristiansand would set in motion a domino effect that could see all four teams in Group D finish with six points after the six rounds of the Women’s EHF Champions League 2018/19 Group Phase.

CSM Bucuresti are vying for their fourth win in as many games against FTC over the last three seasons, while trying to navigate away from trouble after last week’s loss against Vipers.

Meanwhile, the big picture is clearer in Group C, where a draw at Thüringer would grant HC Podravka Vegeta safe passage to the main round. Györi Audi ETO KC and RK Krim Mercator are already through.

RK Krim Mercator (SLO) vs Györi Audi ETO KC (HUN)
Saturday 10 November, 15:00 local time, live on

• Krim are clearly in great form, as they are unbeaten in the last two rounds of the group phase and have won every game in the domestic league
• The Slovenian side will be playing in the Champions League Main Round for the third time in a row
• Title holders Györ have scored the most in the group phase, with 141 goals after four rounds
• Györ will head into the winter break from the Hungarian league in the leading position and will continue the fight for the domestic trophy with a derby against FTC January 2

HC Podravka Vegeta (CRO) vs Thüringer HC (GER)
Sunday 11 November, 18:00 local time, live on

• Though Podravka’s record is still 100% in the domestic league, the Croatian side have to be careful against the German champions – if they lose at home they will need to steal at least one point from Györ in the last round
• Coach Herbert Müller’s squad have conceded the second highest number of goals in the group phase
• If Thüringer leave Croatia without a point, the competition is over for them
• THC are ruling the Bundesliga, alongside with Bietigheim

FTC-Rail Cargo Hungaria (HUN) vs CSM Bucuresti (ROU)
Sunday 11 November, 14:30 local time, live on

• CSM are in turmoil after losing their first game of the season, 26:31, against Vipers Kristiansand last week
• With just a point on Sunday, FTC will be through to the main round for the fourth season in a row
• The Romanian side will rely once again on Cristina Neagu, the top goal scorer of the competition with 34 goals after four rounds, and Andrea Lekic, who tallies 27 goals in the season
• The hosts have never won against CSM, losing their three mutual games until this point

SG BBM Bietigheim (GER) vs Vipers Kristiansand (NOR)
Sunday 11 November, 17:00 local time, live on

• A Vipers win together with a CSM victory in Budapest would see Bietigheim out of the running for the Women’s EHF Champions League Main Round
• The German side have a split record on their home court, having recorded a win against CSM and a loss against FTC. Vipers earned their first ever away win against CSM last week
• The first game between these sides ended in a stalemate, 27:27, with Bietigheim tying the game in the last minute
• If this encounter ends in a draw again then both teams win their last games, and FTC lose both upcoming matches, all four teams will finish the group phase with six points

TEXT: Béla Müller / Adrian Costeiu / cg