Spotlights on Russian-Hungarian duels in round 3Article
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ROUND PREVIEW: Unbeaten Rostov and FTC meet in MOTW, while CSKA travel to Györ in two standout ties this weekend

»EHF CL Channel »2021-22 Women's CL

Two duels between Russian and Hungarian teams are among the highlights of round 3 of the group phase in the DELO EHF Champions League 2021/22 this weekend.

The Match of the Week pits two unbeaten teams in group A against each other, as Rostov-Don host FTC-Rail Cargo Hungaria for their 13th European meeting in the last nine years.

In group B, Györi Audi ETO KC and CSKA are both eager to maintain their perfect record when they meet in Hungary on Sunday.

Also, title holders Vipers Kristiansand will be challenged by Metz Handball in France.


MOTW: Rostov-Don (RUS) vs FTC-Rail Cargo Hungaria (HUN)
Saturday 25 September, 16:00 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • the MOTW is the 13th meeting between the two sides over the last nine years, with Rostov taking 10 wins and FTC just one
  • Rostov try to repeat their feat from last season, when they started with three wins from three games
  • Dutch wing Angela Malestein has scored 15 goals in FTC’s first two matches
  • after two rounds, Rostov are the only team with two wins in group A, while they are both among the six teams that are yet unbeaten
  • Rostov coach Per Johansson: “FTC play one of the fastest styles of handball in Europe, they are very brave and use a lot of counter-attacks; it is a very dangerous opponent for us”
  • both teams had commanding wins in their domestic league this week: Rostov beat Astrakhanochka 35:26 while FTC defeated Érd 36:18

HC Podravka Vegeta (CRO) vs CSM Bucuresti (ROU)
Saturday 25 September, 18:00 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • CSM have never started a CL with three straight defeats, but have lost against Esbjerg and Rostov in their two matches so far this season
  • both sides won in their domestic league on Wednesday: CSM had a 38:30 win against local rivals Rapid Bucuresti, while Podravka dominated Trešnjevka, 41:13
  • the Romanian side had big issues in attack, scoring the second-lowest number of goals after two matches: 48
  • CSM’s fourth goal will see them get to the 2,500-goal mark in CL history, only the 13th team to reach that milestone
  • the two teams have not met before in European competitions

BV Borussia 09 Dortmund (GER) vs Brest Bretagne Handball (FRA)
Saturday 25 September, 18:00 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • the German champions earned three points from their first two matches and scored the most goals in their group: 59
  • Dortmund’s Alina Grijseels is the leading scorer in the CL, with 20 goals
  • the two teams enjoyed clear victories in their domestic leagues on Wednesday: Dortmund against Buxtehuder (37:31), Brest against Celles (38:25)
  • Brest have never lost a game in European competitions against German opposition, securing five wins and one draw – which was against Dortmund last season (33:33)

Team Esbjerg (DEN) vs Buducnost BEMAX (MNE)
Sunday 26 September, 14:00 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • having lost their first two matches, Buducnost are in danger of repeating their worst ever start to a CL season, losing three times in 2004/05
  • Buducnost are still one short of their 150th win in the CL, after losing their last four matches
  • Esbjerg won only three of their last nine home matches in the competition, including a last-gasp 22:21 against CSM Bucuresti earlier this season
  • still without Dutch back Estavana Polman, who is recovering from knee surgery, Esbjerg have scored the lowest number of goals in the CL so far this season: 45
  • Buducnost have conceded the second largest number of goals in the CL, 63, two less than Kastamonu in group B
  • Team Esbjerg left back Kristine Breistøl: “Buducnost are a team with a lot of history in the DELO EHF Champions League. Even though they do not have the star players they used to have, the team still has a strong mentality and they will fight to the end”


Kastamonu Belediyesi GSK (TUR) vs Krim Mercator Ljubljana (SLO)
Saturday 25 September, 16:00 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • while Krim are playing their 27th straight season in Europe's premier club competition, Kastamonu are debutants at this level
  • both teams, who have never played each other before, sit bottom of group B with zero points after two matches
  • in round 2, Kastamonu suffered a 34:27 defeat against CSKA, while Krim lost at home against Györ, 31:26
  • Kastamonu's Slovenian centre back Nina Zulic played for Krim in the past, between 2017 and 2020
  • Krim's captain Nina Zabek, who was sidelined through an injury since February, is expected to return on court on Saturday

Metz Handball (FRA) vs Vipers Kristiansand (NOR)
Sunday 26 September, 16:00 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • the teams have met six times before in the CL: Metz won three games, Vipers two, and one game ended in a draw
  • they also shared a group last season, when Vipers narrowly won in France (29:28) and the return match had to be called off amid Covid-19 restrictions
  • Metz played their first match last week and defeated Odense 27:21 in MOTW; title holders Vipers got their first points of the season by beating Sävehof, 34:25
  • Nora Mørk scored 12 goals against Sävehof, but Ragnhild Dahl is Vipers’ best scorer so far, with 17 goals after two matches

IK Sävehof (SWE) vs Odense Håndbold (DEN)
Sunday 26 September, 16:00 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • both teams are level on two points after two matches: they opened the tournament with victories but lost in round 2
  • it is the second straight Nordic derby for Sävehof, after losing to Vipers last week
  • Odense lost the MOTW against Metz despite nine goals by Dione Housheer
  • Odense head coach Ulrik Kirkely: “We expect a match played with great intensity, where it will be important that we can put an additional layer on our game compared to our matches in the past week”
  • the Danish side maintain a perfect record in their domestic league, five wins in as many matches, after defeating Arhus on Tuesday, 31:22
  • Sävehof and Odense have not faced each other before in European club competitions

Györi Audi ETO KC (HUN) vs CSKA (RUS)
Sunday 26 September, 16:00 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • both sides have a 100 per cent record so far: Györ won two games against Nordic rivals Vipers and Sävehof, CSKA won their so far only match, against Kastamonu
  • CSKA were CL debutants last season when they held five-time CL winners Györ to a 27:27 draw in Moscow
  • however, Györ won both other matches they played: 31:24 at home arena in the group phase, 32:21 in the third-place match at the DELO EHF FINAL4 2021
  • Györ player Veronica Kristiansen: “This weekend we will re-play again the bronze medal match from last season. A lot of things have changed since then, but not that we want to win this match also. CSKA are a very good team, so it will again be a though game”
  • the 2020/21 CL top scorer, Ana Gros, scored 10 times in her CL debut for CSKA and has played for Györ in the past (2010-12)
  • both teams won domestic league encounters on Wednesday: Györ beat Alba 30:25, and CSKA defeated Zvezda 35:27

TEXT: EHF / Adrian Costeiu, Sergey Nikolaev