Chance for group 1’s first quarter-final decisionsArticle
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GROUP 1 PREVIEW: The matches over the upcoming weekend are expected to determine some teams that will progress to the DELO WOMEN’S EHF Champions League quarter-finals

Chance for group 1’s first quarter-final decisions

Unlike group 2, no DELO WOMEN'S EHF Champions League quarter-finalists have been determined in group 1 as yet, but things may change this round.

Rostov-Don and Metz Handball, who are level on nine points, will meet in Match of the Week, and the winners of their duel are likely to go through to the next stage. Team Esbjerg, who also have nine points, will secure their quarter-final spot if they grab at least one point in the Scandinavian derby against Vipers Kristiansand.

CSM Bucuresti will improve their chances of progressing if they beat FTC-Rail Cargo Hungaria, who, in turn, will be eliminated in case of a loss. 

CSM Bucuresti (ROU) vs FTC-Rail Cargo Hungaria (HUN)
Friday 21 February, 17:30 CET, live on

  • CSM are fourth on the table with seven points, while FTC sit bottom of the group with three

  • in the reverse fixture, FTC put on an impressive performance and claimed a 33:23 home victory

  • Cristina Neagu, who scored 14 goals in each of the two last Champions League matches, has extended her contract with CSM for two more years

  • FTC’s Katrin Klujber is in second place in the competition’s top scorer chart, with 60 goals

MOTW: Rostov-Don (RUS) vs Metz Handball (FRA)
Saturday 22 February, 14:00 CET, live on

  • both teams have nine points, but Metz are first placed and Rostov are second based on goal difference

  • in the reverse fixture, Metz celebrated a 23:20 win at home

  • the French side claimed just one point in the last two games, losing at CSM and splitting points with Esbjerg

  • in contrast, Rostov have taken two straight victories, defeating Vipers and FTC

  • Metz’s Xenia Smits made her return after a half-year absence and helped her team to defeat Toulon in the French Cup Last 16 on Tuesday

  • Rostov coach Ambros Martin extended his contract and will stay with the Russian side in the next season

Team Esbjerg (DEN) vs Vipers Kristiansand (NOR)
Sunday 23 February, 16:50 CET, live on

  • Esbjerg are level with group leaders Metz and Rostov on nine points, but are third placed due to goal difference

  • the Danish side won the previous meeting against Vipers, 35:31 in Norway

  • Esbjerg ended their four-match winning run in the competition by playing a draw against Metz in the previous round

  • fifth-ranked Vipers have lost all three games since the start of the main round 

TEXT: Sergey Nikolaev / cg