Summary: Easy win for Serbia closes January qualifiers
The Men's EHF EURO 2022 Qualifiers as well as the EHF EURO Cup 2022 resumed in the first two weeks of January 2021.
Serbia defeating Greece on Wednesday was the last match of this month's schedule, with the qualifiers set to return in March 2021.
- the Men's EHF EURO 2022 Qualifiers have resumed from 5 to 13 January
- on Wednesday, Serbia beat Greece 31:21 (15:12) in the last match of this block of qualifiers
- Germany have become the first team in the qualifiers to advance to the finals tournament following their fourth straight win on Sunday
- hosts Hungary and Slovakia as well as EHF EURO 2020 champions Spain and runners-up Croatia are directly qualified
- Croatia beat Spain last week to lead the EHF EURO Cup with two wins from two matches
- the next qualifiers are scheduled for March 2021
An intense early January block of Men's EHF EURO 2022 Qualifiers has come to an end today, with Serbia beating Greece in group 1. The qualifiers fun returns in March as we take further steps on the road to Hungary and Slovakia.
Thanks for joining us here on the live blog, and it wouldn't be a proper 'goodbye' if we left you without the best pictures of the day. So, enjoy the gallery!
Confirmation of Serbia beating Greece in group 1 today. This match closes the January block of the Men's EHF EURO 2022 Qualifiers - but more qualifiers are coming your way in March!
RESULT | Serbia vs Greece 31:21
Serbia click into a higher gear in the second half to beat Greece by 10 goals. Bogdan Radivojevic is the hosts' most productive player, with eight.
Cool lob was that to get the second half started, Mijajlo Marsenic!
Charalampos Dompris has just got one back for Greece but Serbia enjoy a healthy six-goal lead with 17 minutes left.
Sometimes it's all about power. Sometimes it's even not.
HALF-TIME | Serbia vs Greece 15:12
Serbia lead at the break, but also well done to Greece, who have brought back the margin to just three at the end of the first half.
Team timeout Greece! They trail 13:8 with 10 minutes left in the first half.
Serbia lead Greece 10:7 after the opening quarter, with Bogdan Radivojevic for the hosts and Christodoulos Mylonas for the visitors each scoring three times.
Dejan Milosavljev has just saved a penalty to help Serbia maintain a slim 4:3 lead over Greece in the opening minutes.
Serbia have started their qualifiers campaign in group 1 in impressive style. First, they beat France 27:24 at home eight days ago, and followed up on that result but getting a 26:26 draw in Créteil four days later.
For Greece, today's match marks the start of their campaign. Belgium is the fourth team in this group.
Serbia and Greece have not met before in an official match.
Here are the current standings in group 1:
Before all eyes in men's international handball turn to Egypt for the World Championship 2021, we have one more EHF EURO 2022 Qualifier for you: Serbia take on Greece at 17:00 CET.
So, welcome back to the live blog!
And what better way to round off the blog for Sunday than than by looking at the best photos from the five matches? There is still one Men's EHF EURO 2022 qualifiers match scheduled on 13 January between Serbia and Greece that will be covered here.
Just in case you missed all of the action in Sunday's EHF EURO 2022 qualifiers, here is an overview of the results from the five matches.
Our blog poll tonight asks which was the most impressive performance in Sunday's EHF EURO 2022 qualifiers? We have whittled it down to three options for you.
It is Germany's night in terms of having achieved qualification for the Men's EHF EURO 2022, but the last action post on the blog this Sunday rightfully belongs to Kay Smits.
What an incredible way to play your 50th international for your country! Kay Smits' draw-clinching equaliser was his ninth goal of the match, the most of any player in the Slovenia vs Netherlands match.
RESULT | Bosnia and Herzegovina 21:19 Estonia
Estonia rallied as much as possible in the second half, but Bosnia and Herzegovina register their first win in the Men's EHF EURO 2022 qualifiers.
The Dutch celebrations show how thrilled they are to pick up a point against Slovenia away.
RESULT | Slovenia 27:27 Netherlands
A dramatic finish sees the Netherlands earn a point. Leading 27:26, Slovenia were called for passive play on their final attack. The Dutch called a timeout with 20 seconds remaining, and Kay Smits smuggled a shot past Ferlin in the dying seconds to snatch a point.
Two minutes to go and Slovenia hold a two-goal lead, 27:25, once again after goals from Dolenec and Gajic.
The score is now 25:25 between Slovenia and the Netherlands with five minutes left. A tense finish is in store for both teams.
...Or maybe not. Kay Smits nets an in-flight goal and follows up with another as part of a quickfire four-goal Dutch run, reducing Slovenia's lead to 25:24.
After Dragan Gajic scores on another fast break, Slovenia's lead is now five goals (25:20). With 10 minutes remaining, they have seemingly made the match-winning move on the scoreboard.
Slovenia coach Ljubomir Vranjes calls a timeout with his side ahead 22:19.
With four goals, Marko Panic leads the scoring for Bosnia and Herzegovina against Estonia as his side lead 18:14 after 44 minutes.
Slovenia goalkeeper Klemen Ferlin's three saves in under five minutes have helped the hosts enjoy a four-goal run. In fairness, he was in good form in the first half too.
We are underway in the second half in Slovenia. If the Dutch team's fast-paced start is anything to go by, this match could go down to the wire. The score is 16:16 after 34 minutes.
HALF-TIME | Bosnia and Herzegovina 12:9 Estonia
Scoring has picked up from the early stages of the match, and Bosnia and Herzegovina have a three-goal lead against Estonia at half-time in group 2. If Bosnia and Herzegovina win the match, it will be their first win in the Men's EHF EURO 2022 qualifiers.
The goal timeline from the first half suggests that Slovenia have enjoyed more consistency in terms of scoring.
HALF-TIME | Slovenia 15:13 Netherlands
Stas Stuke's shot is saved on Slovenia's long and final attack of the first half, but they hold a two-goal lead at the break, largely thanks to line player Matej Gaber's five goals in the first half.
The lead has swung back and forth between Slovenia and the Netherlands. Matej Gaber's delightful lob put Slovenia ahead again 13:12, but it was only temporarily as the Dutch side equalised on the next attack.
Slovenia's three-goal lead at 8:5, opened up when Dragan Gajic netted on a fast break, has been cancelled out and the Dutch are now level at 10:10.
Goals are hard to come by so far in the match between Bosnia and Herzegovina and Estonia. It is 2:2 after 13 minutes.
The Dutch men's national team's Twitter account marked the milestone reached by Kay and Jorn Smits pre-match. Both brothers are already on the scoresheet for the Netherlands – although Slovenia lead 5:4 after 10 minutes.
Here are the teams for the Slovenia vs Netherlands match, which has just started over on EHFTV and is the match that we will probably focus on a little more on the blog.
Interestingly, brothers Kay Smits and Jorn Smits are both playing in their 50th international match each for the Netherlands.
The final two matches from this weekend's EHF EURO 2020 qualifiers start at 20:00 CET. Here are the direct EHFTV.com links for both games:
Confirmation of the group 2 standings that show Germany have won four from four matches, which should make very happy reading if you are a German fan.
RESULT | Germany 34:20 Austria
A result that was never in doubt: Germany earn a 14-goal win that seals their place at the Men's EHF EURO 2022.
Germany delivered at both ends of the court throughout the match, as this example of Heinevetter making a save that resulted in Gensheimer finishing off a counter-attack move showed.
Germany's 14-goal lead has been restored. They lead 29:15 and are within touching distance of the Men's EHF EURO 2022 – at least metaphorically.
Eight goals in 12 minutes for Austria is certainly an indication of a more promising start to the second half. However, Germany's lead is still at a healthy nine goals (22:13) after Paul Drux's latest goal.
The emojis in the short summary from the German national teams' Twitter account demonstrates how impressed they are with their side's performance in the first half.
HALF-TIME | Germany 19:5 Austria
Germany have dominated the first half against Austria and hold a 14-goal lead. As the close in on sealing their place at the Men's EHF EURO 2022, enjoy watching Uwe Gensheimer in full flow.
RESULT | Iceland 32:23 Portugal
Iceland take the two points against Portugal by an astonishing nine goals. As was asked on the EHF EURO Twitter account, who saw that coming? It was not easy to foresee during the first half.
Left wing Bjarki Mar Elisson is in vintage form, and Iceland now hold a staggering eight-goal lead, 27:19, with just under nine minutes remaining.
A timeout is called by Portugal with Iceland leading 22:17, but the first action after the brief break in play sees Sigvaldi Bjørn Gudjonsson score on a fast break.
Do not forget that Germany versus Austria begins in a few minutes on EHFTV.com as well. Of course, the match still has Iceland featured in some form – as Alfred Gislason is the German team's head coach.
Iceland have had a sharp start to the second half and have quickly taken a 17:15 lead.
Victor Iturriza was in good form for Portugal in the first half. Take a look at his best goal here, which featured a delightful backhand pass to provide him with the opportunity.
HALF-TIME | Iceland 12:13 Portugal
Portugal hold a one-goal lead after 30 minutes against Iceland – but a win by one goal is all they need today.
Portugal are renowned for their use of an extra attacking player, but it has hurt them in the last few minutes as Iceland have cut their lead to one goal, 12:11, with two empty net goals of their own.
Fabio Magalhães steals the ball and is able to put it into an unguarded Icelandic net at the other end, extending Portugal's lead to five goals (11:6).
Line player Victor Iturriza converts back-to-back opportunities to give Portugal a 10:6 lead after 21 minutes, their first four-goal lead of the half.
Eight minutes gone and Portugal hold a slender 3:2 lead against Iceland. It is fair to say that both teams are finding their footing in the early stages.
A win for Portugal against Iceland in this match will seal their place at the Men's EHF EURO 2022. There can be no bigger incentive to maintain their 100 per cent record in group 4 than that!
Final preparations are underway for the second of Sunday's matches. Throw-off between Iceland and Portugal begins at 17:00 CET, live on EHFTV.com.
Whilst Latvia will be pleased to pick up their first points in group 6, Italy's 11-goal win on Thursday means that they will have the head-to-head advantage should both teams need to be separated by direct head-to-head at the end of the group phase.
RESULT | Latvia 31:29 Italy
Nils Kreicbergs and Ingars Dude both score inside the final minute, handing Latvia a two-goal win in Sunday's opener.
An attacker foul is called against Italy, and Latvia have the ball and a 29:28 lead with just under a minute left.
The clock has been stopped with just over two-and-a-half minutes left. With the score level at 28:28, there is everything to play for...
The hectic action continues and Italy have a seven-metre throw, but perhaps more importantly, Kristopans has been given a two-minute suspension for the foul.
A three-goal run for Latvia prompts an Italian timeout with just over five minutes remaining. Ingars Dude has now scored seven for Latvia, including their last goal from a fast break, but the assist was, of course, supplied by Kristopans.
Just as you think that Latvia have the game under control, Italy come roaring back and now lead 25:24 with just over 10 minutes left.
If you missed Kristopans at his best during the first half, take a look at his best goal from the first half.
Meanwhile, a breakthrough goal from Nils Kreicbergs has restored Latvia's lead to three goals, 20:17.
The second half is underway and Italy have scored two unanswered goals within three minutes to reduce Latvia's lead to 17:16.
HALF-TIME | Latvia 17:14 Italy
30 minutes gone and with no further goals in the first half, the score is 17:14 in Latvia's favour. Dainis Kristopans has made the impact that many expect, scoring five goals in the first half.
Latvia lead by three goals, 17:14, as we close in on half-time with just under two minutes to go in the first half.
Dainis Kristopans registered a trademark back court bullet a few minutes ago to give Latvia a 9:7 lead, but they have called a timeout after 18 minutes played.
After a fast-paced opening 12 minutes, Latvia are ahead 7:5.
Here are the respective team sheets for both teams.
The national anthems have been completed and we are ready to begin.
The warm-up is underway ahead of our first match of Sunday, which will see Latvia attempting to avenge their 11-goal loss against Italy from earlier in the week.
Welcome to Sunday's coverage of the Men's EHF EURO 2022 qualifiers. We have five matches live on EHFTV.com from four different groups.
14:10 CET: Latvia vs Italy – group 6
17:00 CET: Iceland vs Portugal – group 4
18:10 CET: Germany vs Austria – group 2
20:00 CET: Bosnia and Herzegovina vs Estonia – group 2
20:00 CET: Slovenia vs Netherlands – group 5
An overview of both of the results from Saturday's Men's EHF EURO 2022 qualifiers. The live blog returns tomorrow at 13:30 for what is feast of handball action, arguably headlined by Germany versus Austria and Iceland against Portugal. Don't miss it!
A notable milestone from the Poland versus Turkey match: Przemysław Krajewski scored his 300th goal for Poland.
RESULT - Poland 35:24 Turkey
Poland celebrate a resounding 11-goal win against Turkey in group 5 – bringing them closer to booking their spot for the EHF EURO 2022.
With six goals, Tomasz Gebala was named as the MVP for the hosts.
A commanding second half from Poland sees them hold a 10-goal lead (31:21) with four minutes remaining.
With 15 minutes to go, Poland lead 24:18 and are on course to record another win against Turkey.
Here is the big moment from the end of Serbia's draw against France: Vladimir Cupara's draw-clinching save.
Sumptuous handball? Not far off from Poland. Arkadiusz Moryto's assist for Tomasz Gebala in the first half for Poland is definitely worth checking out.
HALF-TIME – Poland 16:12 Turkey
Poland are ahead after 30 minutes against Turkey, 16:12, and Arkadiusz Moryto's six goals for the hosts have certainly helped.
RESULT – France 26:26 Serbia
Drama until the very end! Serbia lost the ball through a turnover with 15 seconds to go, prompting France to call a timeout with the score tied at 26:26. However, on their last attack, Timothy N'Guessan's shot is saved by Vladimir Cupara (who else?) and the match ends in a draw.
Lazar Kukic picks up a suspension with under two minutes to go, and France have an opportunity – trailing 25:26 – to equalise.
Serbia's save efficiency sat at 31 per cent as per the last caption. Whatever the result, Vladimir Cupara has played a big part in their performance.
Just under 10 minutes to go and Serbia are ahead 23:22 against France as another timeout is called. You can sense that the tension is increasing - particularly if Petar Djordjic's reaction to converting a recent penalty was a good guide.
Poland versus Turkey is also underway on EHFTV.com. Poland are ahead in the early stages 5:3 after eight minutes.
France keep threatening to launch a comeback in the second half, but Serbia convert another fast break and they lead 20:17.
Just before the second half of France versus Serbia gets underway, check out Bogdan Radivojevic's goal from the back court in the first half that we mentioned.
HALF-TIME – France 12:15 Serbia
Vladimir Cupara stops France's final shot of the first half and Serbia lead 15:12 after 30 minutes in Creteil.
Right wing Bogdan Radivojevic spectacularly scores from the back court and then converts a fast break, before Lazar Kukic nets his first of the game to extend Serbia's lead to four goals (15:11).
Serbia's six-versus-five play worked perfectly at the end of Kentin Mahe's suspension as Milos Orbovic broke through a huge gap to restore a two-goal lead, 10:8.
Serbia's first deficit of the match was enough for coach Antonio Gerona to call a timeout.
Kentin Mahe feeds Luka Karabatic for a straightforward fast break goal, giving France their first lead of the match, 7:6.
Serbia enjoyed a sharp start, taking a 4:1 lead with Mijajlo Marsenic and Petar Djordjic netting two apiece, but France have levelled at 4:4 after eight minutes.
The national anthems have just been completed and we are ready for the match to begin!
The warm-up for both teams is well underway in Creteil.
Welcome to our live blog coverage of Saturday's two matches from the EHF EURO 2022 qualifiers.
In group 1 France host Serbia in our first match at 19:00 CET on EHFTV.com, followed by Poland versus Turkey in group 5 at 20:00 CET.
Can France avenge Tuesday's 27:24 from the match held in Serbia, or will Serbia record their second win over France in a week? We will be covering the match from the build-up to the final whistle to find out.
We bid you a good evening, but come back tomorrow (Saturday 9 January) for these two #ehfeuro2022 Qualifiers:
France v Serbia 19:00
Poland v Turkey 20:00
...and this heavyweight #eurocup2022 clash:
Croatia vs Spain 18:00
All times CET and all on #EHFTV.
Have a look at some lovely snaps from our solitary #ehfeuro2022 Qualifier tonight between Norway and Belarus.
Norway now top #ehfeuro2022 Qualification Phase 2, Group 6 with four points from three games. See the table HERE.
Sebastian Barthold scored nine goals from nine attempts for Norway. Mr 100%.
19:55 | RESULT - Norway 27:19 Belarus
Well, Norway showed who is boss in that last eight minutes - scoring six unanswered goals to grab the comprehensive win.
A time-out for Norway as they prepare to kill off Belarus - they lead 22:19 with eight minutes remaining.
A red and then blue card for Belarus' Aliaksandr Tsitou. There are 10 minutes left for his team to pull something back.
Norway have shown great resilience, going ahead clearly again, forcing Belarus into a time-out with just under 15 minutes remaining. The home side lead 20:16.
Belarus finally take the lead, after 36 minutes.
The youngsters of Norway hold on to their lead, it's 11:10 at half-time.
Time-out for Belarus
Always got time for this.
At 6:5 ahead, Norway take a time-out and from it, go 7:5 up.
From 5:1 down, Belarus have brought it back to just one goal - 5:4. Yulyan Hiryk has grabbed a couple.
Belarus finally score, just past the 10-minute mark. They have only had four shots so far, scoring just once.
10 minutes gone and it's 5:0 to Norway - that's not a formation, it's the score.
We're off! Here are the teams....and, yes, RAMBO is playing for Norway.
Norway are ready too.
Belarus are looking to repeat their Tuesday night victory over Norway tonight. They are ready.
Friday - 17:52
Good evening and welcome to our fourth day of EHF EURO 2022 qualifiers this week. On Tuesday night, Belarus beat Norway 33:25 and they meet again tonight.
Norway vs Belarus
We conclude tonight's coverage with some pics of Italy and Latvia in action. We'll see you tomorrow for more fun in the EHF EURO qualifiers as Norway take on Belarus. Goodnight!
22:02 | RESULT - Italy 28:17 Latvia
They've done it! Fair to say that Italy are happy about an impressive 11-goal victory.
Surely Italy will hold on for a well-deserved win now? It is +7 with 15 minutes left.
.......and this could be why Latvia have scored just eight times in 30 minutes.
Not been one for fans of fluid and decisive attacking.......
21:09 | HALF-TIME: Italy 13:8 Latvia
An upset is underway in Chieti, Italy as the home side lead Latvia by FIVE goals. Italian pivot Andréa Parisini already has five goals and the boys in blue have limited Paris Saint-Germain's Dainis Kristopans to just a solitary strike.
In attack, Latvia discuss what to do, with Nikita Pancenko #2 (173cm) and Dainis Kristopans #10 (213cm) in deep conversation.
Time for a time-out for Latvia coach Sandris Versakovs, with his team 8:6 down after 17 minutes.
Halfway through the first half and Italy have a slight edge, leading 7:6. Andréa Parisini already has three goals for the home side.
Here the team line-ups. Of course, the stand-out player - literally - is Latvia's Dainis Kristopans, a recent VELUX EHF FINAL4 2020 bronze medallist. He joined up with his national side later than the other players, attending just one training session with them before the clash tonight. Italy team news is HERE.
The national anthems have finished and the players are buzzing!
EHFTV is ready in Italy - are you?
Thursday - 20:15
Good evening and welcome to our third day of EHF EURO 2022 qualifiers this week. Just the one match tonight as Latvia travel to Italy to open up their qualification campaign.
EHF EURO 2020 saw Latvia secure their first ever appearance at a major handball finals tournament after a qualification campaign which saw four victories from six matches.
Can they repeat their success? They face Italy, who played their first EHF EURO 2022 qualification match last November, losing heavily to Norway, 39:24.
Italy vs Latvia
We conclude tonight's coverage with the best shots from across Europe on Wednesday. We'll see you tomorrow for more fun in the EHF EURO qualifiers. Goodnight!
Here's an overview of today's matches. Missed any of the action? Well, scroll on down to see how the day unfolded.
There was a lot of good action today but this is easily the best we've seen all day. In case you missed it, enjoy this beauty from Turkey's rising star, Doruk Pehlivan.
That brings an end to a long and fun day of EHF EURO action, but the fun doesn't stop here. We have Italy vs Latvia on Thursday, Norway vs Belarus on Friday and a plethora of matches over the weekend.
Before we leave you for tonight, tell us which winning performance impressed you most?
Just when it looked like Portugal may fall apart, saves like this from Quintana put them back on track. That win makes it a perfect three from three and they are looking good for a second consecutive EHF EURO.
22:06 | RESULT - Portugal 26:24 Iceland
Three brilliant saves for Portugal, one by Humberto Gomes from a penalty and a double stop by Alfredo Quintana, make the difference in the final minutes as they grind out a two-goal victory, wrapped up by top scorer Pedro Portela scoring his seventh goal on a fast break.
It wasn't a vintage performance but they won't care and it is certainly a character-building experience for both before they continue their trilogy of battles this weekend in Iceland.
Looks like this will be decided right at the death. Portugal grab the lead again, 23:22, with just over five minutes remaining. Real drama in Matosinhos tonight.
As soon as I write the last entry, Fabio Magalhaes gets a direct and arguably harsh red card, Iceland are inspired and take 21:20 lead while suddenly nothing seems to work for Portugal in attack, a far cry from the Martins goal below. 12 minutes remaining.
The fifth goal of the night from Bjarki Elisson brings Iceland back within one goal, 20:19, and Portugal are beginning to feel the pressure and react strongly to everything happening on the court. If they can keep their cool, they should have enough to win but nothing is certain at this moment with 16 minutes left to play.
Bright start to the second half for Iceland with a quickfire double from Viggo Kristjánsson cutting the deficit to one, momentarily. Portugal coach Paulo Pereira pleads for some calm and patience from his men and before you know it, they're up by three again - 17:14 after 35 minutes.
21:09 | HALF-TIME: Portugal 14:11 Iceland
So far, so good for the hosts in our final game of the day though it feels like both teams have a lot left in the tank, which is understandable given the fact they'll be facing each other two more times in the next week.
Iceland will be buoyed by their ability to create shooting chances but they have to finish their dinner - 11 goals from 22 shots so far.
He didn't start the game but an injury to Cavalcanti meant Andre Gomez entered the stage. So far, he's produced this and you feel he could be the difference if he is given the time and space needed today. 10:8 to Portugal after 24 minutes.
This game is far from a classic but that doesn't mean it's not engaging. Portugal take an 8:6 lead after 17 minutes as Portela scores his third penalty. Doing something to prevent giving away those penalties is going to be key for Iceland tonight.
It's been a cagey affair so far with neither side looking too sharp. Looks like we'll have an interesting battle on the wing between Pedro Portela and Bjarki Elisson - both have scored a pair so far. 4:4 after 10 minutes.
Just one match remaining this evening, the first of a triple-header between Portugal and Iceland - two EHF EURO 2022 qualifiers and their World Championship opener in the space of eight days, which makes this match a must-watch. Catch it now on EHFTV.
20:04 | RESULT - Estonia 24:21 Bosnia Herzegovina
Estonia have claimed a massively important win, coming from three goals down at half-time to pick up their first points of the campaign, inspired by eight goals each from Kaspar Lees and Karl Toom.
This is Estonia's first phase 2 qualifier win since 2011, when they completed a double over Bosnia Herzegovina, and this win keeps their qualification hopes alive as they look forward to the return game on Sunday.
There is a thriller developing in Polva as Estonia and Bosnia Herzegovina are tied at 20:20 with five minutes remaining...
The average fan may not know too many players on these teams, but you'll know Benjamin Buric!
19:42 | RESULT - Netherlands 23:34 Slovenia
A 20:8 second half scoreline says it all. Excellent work from Slovenia and a serious confidence boost for Ljubo Vranjes' side, while the Dutch have some soul-searching to do before the two teams meet again on Sunday in Celje.
Where did the Dutch go? All of a sudden they trail 31:19 and it has not been a pretty sight. Empty-net goals galore for Slovenia. In fairness to them, their defence has really improved in this second half and completely shut down the Netherlands, who look a bit lost for ideas at the moment.
You would have expected Slovenia to come out strong in the second half and they have done exactly that, going on a 5:0 run in under five minutes to lead 19:15 and suddenly leave Netherlands with a hill to climb.
In the other match on right now, Bosnia Herzegovina lead Estonia 14:11 at the break.
More of this "route one" approach from Borut Mackovsek and Slovenia may be their key to success in the second half. The Dutch seem to be well-capable of matching their speed in attack so far, can they do it for another 30 minutes?
18:50 | HALF-TIME - Netherlands 15:14 Slovenia
Wow, that match really came to life in the final 10 minutes of the first half. Slovenia got their act together in defence and drew themselves back into the match, thanks to some nice play down the right with Janc setting up Dragan Gajic for three goals. One worrying area for Slovenia's coach Ljubo Vranjes is that 11 of their goals have come from that side of the court.
As for the Dutch, Kay Smits leads the way with six, besides that, they are getting a lot of joy on the counter-attacks, an area they will hope to keep exploiting in the second half.
Slovenia are in a spot of bother in Almere. Despite missing star playmaker Luc Steins, the Netherlands are looking good value for their 12:9 lead after 22 minutes with Kay Smits leading the way with goals like this.
18:32 | RESULT - Turkey 24:29 Poland
Not the smoothest of rides for Poland but the two points is all that matters in an away trip like this. Both sides will feel they have plenty to work on before they meet again in Plock on Saturday.
While it appears Poland are home and dry, leading 26:20 with 5 minutes remaining, we can switch focus to Netherlands vs Slovenia, where the Dutch lead 6:5 after 10 minutes.
It'll be interesting to see how the home side do against the 2020 bronze medallists. The exciting-looking Slovenian squad are considered serious contenders for this month's World Championship.
Poland move through the gears midway through the second half to lead 22:18 but they still can't quite shake off their hosts. Turkey still trying to claw their way back and have begun man-marking two players in defence.
Meanwhile, Netherlands vs Slovenia has just thrown-off and Estonia vs Bosnia-Herzegovina is coming your way at 18:30, both live on EHFTV.
Two empty-net goals in the space of a minute from Özgur Sarak has brought Turkey back within two goals, 17:15 and forced a Poland timeout after 39 minutes. It could have been even closer too, if not for some stunning saves by Piotr Wyszomirski.
For Poland, Szymon Sicko has been the main man in attack, scoring four goals and this the best of them. Overall though, Poland look fairly dangerous throughout the court. We'll see who steps up in the second half as it is about to begin.
Doruk Pehlivan has been the main attraction in this match so far, banging in six goals and as you can see below, he is a serious threat.
The 22-year-old played with Kielce last season and knows what Polish handball is all about. Keeping him contained will be key for Poland to claim the points today.
17:38 | HALF-TIME: Turkey 12:15 Poland
A buzzer-beater blasted in by Doruk Pehlivan is a small boost for Turkey as they head into the dressing rooms but Poland will be the happier side overall.
After being pegged back a couple of times in the first half, a late run of goals from Poland gives them something to defend in the second half.
Although Poland appear to be on top here, they are not pulling away yet and their lead stands at just 10:8 after 21 minutes. Doruk Pehlivan is doing much of the damage for Turkey in attack, scoring four of their goals so far.
A nervy opening for both sides with neither finding their flow just yet. Just over 10 minutes played and Poland hold a 5:4 lead, despite seeing two of their penalties saved by Turkey's Yunus Özmusul.
We're underway in Eskisehir for Turkey vs Poland. We have another birthday boy in this match, Polish keeper Piotr Wyszomirski, turning 33 today and starting between the posts.
Poland will play their first qualifier of the campaign this afternoon, so we haven't seen them in action since their preliminary round exit at EHF EURO 2020. As mentioned below, Turkey suffered a heartbreaking loss to the Dutch in the opening round, the highlights of which are below, and need a win today to hold on to some hope of reaching their first EHF EURO final tournament.
In just over an hour, we have Turkey vs Poland. Turkey came agonisingly close to a perfect start to the group in November, leading the Netherlands throughout before succumbing to a last-gasp Kay Smit goal to lose 27:26.
That result proves they have come a long way since playing in the Emerging Nations championship in 2017 and they will be on the hunt for a big result at home against Poland, a side who have been inconsistent at best in recent years.
After that bit of lunchtime entertainment, we can start looking forward to the four remaining matches on today's schedule.
Turkey vs Poland
Netherlands vs Slovenia
Estonia vs Bosnia-Herzegovina
Portugal vs Iceland
15:16 | RESULT - Austria 27:36 Germany
Germany make it three wins from three in qualification group 2 and put one foot into the final tournament. The nine-goal winning margin flatters the guests a little bit as Austria fell apart somewhat in the final quarter of the match and will have plenty to work on ahead of the return fixture on Sunday.
Marcel Schiller was by far and away Germany's top scorer with 11 goals but it was truly a team performance as 13 men got on the scoresheet, while Boris Zivkovic and Sebastian Frimmel led the way for Austria with seven goals each.
Germany's lead has reached double figures, 36:26, with five minutes remaining as Austria's attack becomes increasingly sloppy and it's punished on the counter-attack.
It has been a real battle but it looks like Germany are going to grab the points. With 10 minutes left on the clock, they lead 32:25.
Marcel Schiller continues to shine with 10 goals and a perfect penalty record, while Austria have missed three of their four penalties today.
Austria have come out strong at the start of the second half, cutting the deficit to 27:24 after 42 minutes. Marcel Schiller is still causing them problems, however, with the German left wing scoring eight so far today.
The second half is underway and if you needed another reason, besides the handball on display, to watch - how about the tunes? You'll also hear face of the EHF Champions League Markus Floth on hall announcer duty!
14:21 | Half-time - Austria 16:22 Germany
Goals galore in Graz, 38 in just 30 minutes so far and after it took them a while to settle, Germany have found their flow and taken control of this game.
Plenty for Alfred Gislason to be happy about but there is no doubt he'll be wary of what Austria can do in the second half, particularly Boris Zivkovic firing in six goals so far and Sebastian Frimmel adding four on the left wing.
Germany beginning to flex as they take a 17:13 lead with five minutes remaining in the first half and impressively, they have spread the scoring among nine players!
We've hit the quarter-hour mark in Graz and it's all-square at 8:8. Both sides giving as good as they're getting so far but the standout player has been Austrian right back Boris Zivkovic with four goals so far.
Austria coach Ales Pajovic turns 42 today and a victory would make it a birthday to remember. Germany are on a seven-match winning streak in games between the two teams, with Austria's last win dating back to 2014.
They have enjoyed a decent start to this clash, however, and lead 3:2 after six minutes.
We're about to get underway in Graz. Austria have one win from one game so far, Germany with two from two, somebody's unblemished record is soon to end. Who will it be? Find out now on EHFTV.
Just over 20 minutes until Austria and Germany throw-off today's first clash. Despite the raft of players missing, Germany will be considered favourites coming into this match.
Austria will fancy their chances at home though and with a number of players from the Fivers club in the team, they will be hoping the spirit they have shown in the European League will be on display today.
Portugal winger Pedro Portela celebrates his birthday today and I'm sure he'd like nothing more than two points as a gift.
EHF EURO 2020's surprise package face Iceland in the first game of an incredible triple-header, beginning tonight in Matosinhos, then on Sunday in Reykjavik before meeting in Cairo in their opening World Championship clash on Thursday. Mind games galore on the way between these two teams.
We have an early start today and what better way to spend a late Wednesday lunch than with Austria vs Germany, throwing off at 13:45 CET.
Germany arrived in Graz late last night for the first of a double-header before both sides head off to Egypt for the World Championship. Both sides are dealing with depleted squads as Germany have had a number of withdrawals, while two of Austria's biggest shooters, Nikola Bilyk and Janko Bozovic are out injured, meaning this one is really difficult to call.
Wednesday - 10:30
Good morning and welcome to our second day of EHF EURO 2022 qualifiers this week. A big day on the horizon with five matches currently scheduled to go ahead.
Unfortunately, Montenegro vs Sweden and Faroe Islands vs Czech Republic have been postponed, due to positive COVID-19 results but there is still plenty to look forward to today.
Austria vs Germany
Turkey vs Poland
Netherlands vs Slovenia
Estonia vs Bosnia-Herzegovina
Portugal vs Iceland
What an unpredictable but enjoyable start to this week's qualifiers' schedule we have seen tonight. Make sure to join us again on Wednesday for more thrilling action from the courts across Europe.
For now, I say goodbye and leave you with the best pictures from tonight's games. Enjoy our gallery!
RESULT | Croatia vs Spain 31:28 (17:14)
It was too little, too late from Spain... The EHF EURO 2020 champions reduce the gap to three in the closing minutes but Croatia take a well-deserved win in the EHF EURO Cup - their second, after they beat Hungary earlier.
RESULT | Serbia vs France 27:24 (14:11)
Serbia hold on to their three-goal half-time lead to beat France. A strong showing from the hosts, who haven't qualified for this month's World Championship - contrary to their opponents...
Not the debut France coach Guillaume Gille, who succeeded Didier Dinart, has been hoping for. He calls a late team timeout but that might not affect Serbia's win, as the hosts lead by two in the last minute...
It is 26:20! Croatia lead Spain by six goals halfway through the second half. Is there a way back for the European champions?
Serbia still up by three with less than seven minutes on the clock. Can France bounce back in the closing stages?
HALF-TIME | Croatia vs Spain 17:14
Croatia lost the EHF EURO 2020 final to Spain, but tonight they are three up after 30 minutes in their EHF EURO Cup game.
Tune in to EHFTV for the second half of this classic match!
RESULT | Belarus vs Norway 33:25 (17:10)
Belarus hold on to their commanding half-time lead to beat Norway for the very first time... and with an eight-goal margin as well!
The difference is still six in Belarus' favour - with less than 12 minutes left... Can Norway turn this around?
Team timeout for Belarus, who are increasing their lead over Norway even further after the break...
HALF-TIME: Belarus vs Norway 17:10
Wow, Belarus leading by seven (= 7!) at the break... Even with Norway having left their star player Sander Sagosen at home, I didn't see this one coming.
Should be a great second half LIVE ON EHFTV!
Belarus have taken a two-goal lead over Norway just past the halfway mark of the first half. Good stuff from the hosts!
So, let's first travel to Minsk, where Belarus host Norway in a group 6 match. This marks Belarus' start into their qualifiers campaign, while Norway won their only match so far, against Italy.
Here are some facts about the game:
- the sides faced each other in the EHF EURO 2016 and 2018 tournaments and Norway won both encounters
- in total, the Norwegian balance against Belarus is four wins, no draw and no defeat
- joint 2020 hosts Norway took their first EHF EURO medal in January, winning bronze
- Norwegian superstar and EHF EURO 2020 top scorer Sander Sagosen just became EHF Champions League winner for the first time, with THW Kiel
- Belarus were part of the last four EHF EURO final tournaments, finishing in 10th position three times
Good afternoon! We are back with Men's EHF EURO 2022 Qualifiers and EHF EURO Cup action today.
After rounds 1 and 2 of the qualifiers were (partly) played in early November, it is time to proceed to round 3 today - though we will also see some postponed matches from the earlier rounds being played this week.
You can check the full schedule including all standings on eurohandball.com and read the preview here: