Kielce seek first points in MOTW against VeszprémArticle
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ROUND PREVIEW: The 2016 champions are among a handful of favourites who lost their season opener last week

»EHF CL Channel »2021-22 Men's CL

Lomza Vive Kielce, SG Flensburg-Handewitt and Paris Saint-Germain HB are among the favourites who started their EHF Champions League Men 2021/22 campaign in group B with a defeat last week.

Kielce will try to earn their first points in Thursday’s Match of the Week, when the 2016 champions host Telekom Veszprém, who are coming off their comeback win against PSG.

In group A, 2020/21 finalists Aalborg Håndbold want to stretch their winning start to the new season when hosting Montpellier HB.


Pick Szeged (HUN) vs HC PPD Zagreb (CRO)
Wednesday 22 September, 18:45 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • Zagreb failed to win any of their last nine matches against Szeged, with their last victory dating back to 2012
  • Szeged started their season with a 29:29 draw at Montpellier, secured by a late equaliser from Austrian newcomer Sebastian Frimmel, the team’s best scorer in that match
  • Zagreb have lost 16 group matches in a row – including their season opener against Aalborg last week; their last win came against Aalborg in February 2020
  • Szeged’s squad includes two former Zagreb players: goalkeeper Mirko Alilovic and, currently injured, right back Luka Stepancic
  • Szeged had a perfect dress rehearsal, winning their domestic league match 39:28 away against EHF European League participants Tatabánya

Aalborg Håndbold (DEN) vs Montpellier HB (FRA)
Wednesday 22 September, 18:45 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • Aalborg and Montpellier have not met before in a European club competition
  • Aalborg were the CL finalists last season, Montpellier won the trophy for a second time in 2018
  • both teams had six-goal wins in their domestic leagues: Aalborg against Kolding (36:30) and Montpellier against Istres (29:23)
  • Aalborg are still without injured newcomer Aron Pálmarsson
  • Aalborg’s defence specialists Hendrik Møllgaard and Jesper Nielsen played in France in the past – but only for Montpellier’s rivals PSG
  • Aalborg line player Jesper Nielsen: “Montpellier showed a lot of strength last season taking the spot from Nantes, but with the spectators back I think we will make it really difficult for them.”

THW Kiel (GER) vs Elverum Handball (NOR)
Wednesday 22 September, 20:45 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • though Kiel play their 24th CL season, this is only their first match against Elverum
  • Elverum coach Börge Lund played for Kiel in the past and won the CL with them in 2010
  • two Kiel players are Norwegian international: Sander Sagosen and Harald Reinkind
  • last season, Kiel lost their first home match of the CL season – against HBC Nantes
  • after the first round last week, Kiel right wing Niclas Ekberg is the one of the two top scorers with 11 goals, alongside Dinamo’s Raul Nantes
  • Kiel comfortably won the Bundesliga ‘classic’ against Flensburg on Sunday: 33:23

HC Vardar 1961 (MKD) vs HC Meshkov Brest (BLR) 
Wednesday 22 September, 20:45 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • both sides failed to win their opener last week: Vardar tied with Elverum, Brest lost to Kiel
  • in four of the last five seasons, Brest and Vardar have shared a group; Brest lead the head-to-head stats with four vs three victories, and one draw
  • both clubs started the season with a new coach: Vardar with Veselin Vujovic and Brest with Daniel Gordo, their third Spanish coach in a row
  • Brest centre back Stas Skube played for Vardar in the past
  • Vardar just signed the French Nyokas brothers: Guy Olivier and Alix Kévynn


MOTW: Lomza Vive Kielce (POL) vs Telekom Veszprém HC (HUN)
Thursday 23 September, 18:45 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • Kielce want to bounce back from their defeat at Dinamo Bucuresti last week, while Veszprém boosted their confidence with a win over PSG
  • Veszprém clearly lead the head-to-stats after 14 duels against Kielce, with 10 wins, one draw and three defeats
  • the previous time they met was in the 2019/20 season, when each team won their home game
  • some Kielce players that were missing in Bucharest last week, like Alex Dujshebaev, are expected to return to the court on Thursday
  • both sides are coming off wins in their domestic leagues: Kielce defeated Zabrze (30:21), Veszprém beat Ferencvaros (30:27)

Barça (ESP) vs HC Motor (UKR)
Thursday 23 September, 18:45 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • both teams won their first game last week: Barça triumphed in the MOTW in Flensburg (25:21), Motor defeated Porto (30:27)
  • Barça’s Luka Cindric is out for six weeks following shoulder surgery
  • both teams also met in the CL group phase last season, when Barça won 42:34 at home and 30:25 in Ukraine
  • Barça scored 44 times in their domestic league game against Nava (44:34) last weekend

Paris Saint-Germain HB (FRA) vs CS Dinamo Bucuresti (ROU)
Thursday 23 September, 20:45 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • PSG let a four-goal lead at Veszprém slip in the last 16 minutes and lost 34:31 last week, while Dinamo had a perfect start to their season, beating Kielce 32:29
  • Dinamo’s Raul Nantes impressed last week as the Brazilian left back netted 11 times, the most for any player in group B
  • it is the first time PSG and Dinamo will meet in the CL
  • Dinamo newcomer Cédric Sorhaindo will return to the Stade Pierre de Coubertin for this match, after he played for Paris for five seasons in the past (2004-09)
  • both teams won in their national league last weekend: PSG against Toulouse (43:28) and Dinamo against Vaslui (37:26)

FC Porto (POR) vs SG Flensburg-Handewitt (GER)
Thursday 23 September, 20:45 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • both teams were defeated last week: Flensburg at home by Barça in the MOTW (25:21), Porto by Motor in Zaporozhye (30:27)
  • Porto and Flensburg also shared the same group last season; the match in Porto could not be played but Flensburg won at home, 36:29
  • last season, Flensburg only lost two away games in the CL, including the first leg of their quarter-final against eventual finalists Aalborg
  • Flensburg lost their Bundesliga game in Kiel last weekend (33:23), while Porto enjoyed an easy win against Horta (38:25)
  • Flensburg’s Franz Semper and Magnus Rød are out for this game with long-term injuries

TEXT: EHF / Kevin Domas, Björn Pazen