Karlsson’s international farewell or a ‘premiere’ for Veszprém?Article
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QUARTER-FINAL PREVIEW: Almost all statistics speak for the hosts of Saturday’s clash in Hungary after their clear away win at Flensburg in the first leg
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Karlsson’s international farewell or a ‘premiere’ for Veszprém?

Telekom Veszprém’s 28:22 victory at SG Flensburg-Handewitt was proof of the current strength of the three-time EHF Champions League finalists – although that six-goal difference ended up being the closest margin of all four quarter-finals so far.

Counting on their power on the home court, Vezsprém are out for their fifth participation at the VELUX EHF FINAL4, while Flensburg need a miracle.

Telekom Veszprem HC (HUN) vs SG Flensburg-Handewitt (GER)
Saturday 4 May, 17:30 local time, live on ehfTV.com
First-leg result: 28:22

  • The last VELUX EHF Champions League Quarter-final match lost by Veszprém was in 2013, against a German side – a 28:29 result against THW Kiel, which led to the elimination of the Hungarian team after a 32:31 result in Kiel

  • Since the implementation of the VELUX EHF FINAL4 in the 2009/10 season, Veszprém only lost two knock-out matches by seven goals, but none of them on home ground: Last season, 25:32 at Skjern in the Last 16, and in the quarter-final of the 2010/11 season, 21:28 at Barcelona

  • The biggest deficit Flensburg ever closed in the Champions League was 10 goals in the 2006/07 Last 16 against Celje, taking a 36:26 win on home ground after a 31:41 away defeat

  • Flensburg only won three of 11 Champions League duels against Veszprém

  • If Veszprém proceed to the VELUX EHF FINAL4, at least three Spanish coaches (Juan Carlos Pastor or Roberto Garcia Parrondo, Raul Gonzales or Talant Dujshebaev) would be part of the event, including David Davis

  • Since Davis took over, Veszprém only lost one of six VELUX EHF Champions League matches on home ground. That defeat was against a German team: Rhein-Neckar Löwen, 28:29

  • Veszprém have never been eliminated in an EHF Champions League knockout round after winning the first leg away 

  • If Flensburg miss the VELUX EHF FINAL4, the quarter-final at Veszprém will be the last international match for SG team captain Tobias Karlsson, who retires after this season

  • If Flensburg fail, it will the third VELUX EHF FINAL4 in a row without a German team

  • If they eliminate Flensburg, it could be a great omen for Veszprém: In 2017 and 2018 SG were defeated in the quarter-finals by the teams that went on to win the Champions league, Vardar and Montpellier

  • Since the first leg on 24 April, Veszprém did not have any domestic matches and could focus on the second leg, while Flensburg had two (victorious) Bundesliga games: 28:23 versus record EHF Cup winners Göppingen and 27:21 against Leipzig. These were wins 26 and 27 in 28 Bundesliga matches so far this season

TEXT: Björn Pazen / cg