20211115 Elm Preview Plock
EHF European League

Plock host Füchse in standout tie of round 3

EHF / Danijela Vekic, Kevin Domas, Tiago Nogueira, Björn Pazen

The EHF European League Men 2021/22 resumes its group phase after a two-week break on Tuesday.

The standout tie in round 3 is the clash between the two top sides of group A: Orlen Wisla Plock and Füchse Berlin.

The two EHF Finals 2021 participants will meet in Poland.

Also, Pfadi Winterthur and Fenix Toulouse hope for their first points of the group phase but have tough away games at Bidoa Irun and Tatran Presov.

In group B, the two leaders will put to a test: Benfica will travel to Finland to meet Cocks while the clash between Nantes and GOG could see the French side catch up with their opponents in case of a victory.

PAUC Handball seek their first win in group C, while RK Nexe will try to continue their winning streak against Gorenje Velenje. Defending champions SC Magdeburg travel to Spain for their 17th win of the season across all competitions.

Only Sporting CP and AEK Athens are unbeaten in group D. All other teams already know the bitter taste of defeat. USAM Nimes Gard are to take on Sporting in a repeat of their ties last season, when the French side came out as winners twice.

GROUP A

Tatran Presov (SVK) vs Pfadi Winterthur (SUI)
Tuesday 16 November, 18:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Presov are on two points after beating Irun and losing at Füchse Winterthur have lost both matches against Plock and Irun
  • the teams meet for the first time in a European competition
  • Presov goalkeeper Tilen Leben: "Pfadi play a somewhat similar style to us, fast handball. So I expect to see a fast tempo match. Both teams also put up a lot of fight in defence so this will be a physical encounter"
  • Pfadi have won the top duel of the Swiss league on Saturday, beating Amicitia Zürich to reduce the gap to the second-ranked side to only one point
  • Presov top the table of the Slovakian league with 10 wins from as many matches

Bidasoa Irun (ESP) vs Fenix Toulouse Handball (FRA)
Tuesday 16 November, 20:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Irun have two points from their victory against Winterthur on their account, while Toulouse lost both previous matches
  • it is the first time both clubs face in an official match
  • Fenix new arrival, Spaniard Eric Balenciaga, played for Logrono last season
  • Irun had a perfect dress rehearsal by beating former EHF Cup winners Granollers in the Spanish league: 34:28
  • Toulouse tied with Cesson in the French Starligue and rank only 11th
  • Bidasoa Irun head coach Jacobo Cuétara: "Fenix Toulouse have started with two away games against Füchse and Plock, the two main favourites. So their zero points are not significant."

Orlen Wisla Plock (POL) vs Füchse Berlin (GER)
Tuesday 16 November, 20:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • both sides have won both their two group matches so far
  • Plock and Berlin were each group winners and, ultimately, participants in the EHF Finals 2021 with Berlin finishing second and Plock fourth
  • though they are regular participants in European competitions, this is the first ever duel of “Oilers” and “Foxes”
  • Berlin are second ranked in the Germany Bundesliga, but just lost to No. 1 Magdeburg at home: 29:33
  • after nine victories from nine matches, Plock share the lead in the Polish league with Lomza Vive Kielce
20211115 Elm Quote Plock
Füchse Berlin are an amazing team, currently in good shape with a high level of play. They have their own good game system, which they have been developing together for a long time. We always look forward to such meetings.
Xavi Sabaté
Orlen Wisla Plock head coach

GROUP B

Chekhovskie medvedi (RUS) vs TBV Lemgo Lippe (GER)
Tuesday 16 November, 18:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • the two clubs played against each other three times in European club competitions, but the last time was more than a decade ago
  • Chekhov are currently bottom of group B with zero point, while Lemgo have two, having taken the points in round 2 in Nantes
  • this weekend, Lemgo won their Bundesliga game in Lübbecke (28:26); the German side is currently ranked sixth in its national league
  • Chekhov are currently top of the Russian Super League, with 11 wins in 12 games; the last one was last Thursday in Saratov (36:28)

Cocks (FIN) vs SL Benfica (POR)
Tuesday 16 November, 18:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Cocks and Benfica faced each other in the EHF Cup 2016/17, and Benfica won both confrontations: 23:21 in Finland, 26:25 at home
  • in their European history, Cocks suffered five losses to Portuguese sides, winning only once – against Sporting CP in the EHF Champions League two years ago
  • after two rounds, Cocks have yet to take a point and stand at the last place of the group, while Benfica are leaders, with the maximum of four points
  • Benfica suffered their first defeat of the season in their domestic league this weekend, losing to Sporting at home (27:30)
  • Cocks remain the undefeated leader of the Finnish league after winning their ninth game in a row against AIFK on Thursday (41:24)

HBC Nantes (FRA) vs GOG (DEN)
Tuesday 16 November, 20:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • this game will be the first between the two sides in European competitions
  • Nantes goalkeeper Emil Nielsen will face many of his national teammates, including Simon Pytlick and Mathias Gidsel, who he played the Golden League with two weeks ago
  • GOG are currently the best offence of the group phase, with 85 goals across two games, while Nantes are the seventh best defence, with 56 goals conceded
  • after the win this weekend over Istres (36:31), Nantes are currently ranked second of the French Lidl Starligue, five points behind Paris
  • GOG remain the undefeated leader of the Danish league after their win last Thursday in Skanderborg (31:23)
20211115 Elm Quote Lemgo Lippe
Chekhovskie medvedi are a physically strong team with a quite unorthodox playing style. We will face other situations than we are used to in the German league. We hope that we will be able to repeat the performance we showed in our away game in Nantes.
Florian Kehrmann
TBV Lemgo Lippe head coach

GROUP C

RK Gorenje Velenje (SLO) vs RK Nexe (CRO)
Tuesday 16 November, 18:45 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • Velenje are yet to win their first game, while Nexe top group C with two victories
  • this will be third encounter of the two clubs, both scoring one win when they met in the EHF Cup 11 years ago
  • Fahrudin Melic is a new player for Nexe, replacing injured Fran Mileta
  • Nexe’s coach Branko Tamše will face his former club
  • Miha Kavcic, Alen Blazevic, Fahrudin Melic and Vedran Zrnic also spent time in Velenje in the past

PAUC Handball (FRA) vs IK Sävehof (SWE)
Tuesday 16 November, 18:45 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • the two clubs have never met before
  • PAUC are still without points, while Sävehof were victorious against La Rioja
  • the French side lost Ivan Filipovic due to knee injury
  • Sävehof have secured a semi-final spot in the Swedish Cup and, with seven wins, are still on top in the Swedish league
  • PAUC impressed with a win over EHF Champions League side Montpellier and are now tied at 0second place with Nantes in the French league

BM Logroño La Rioja (ESP) vs SC Magdeburg (GER)
Tuesday 16 November, 20:45 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • the German powerhouse travel to Spain in search for their third win in the competition, and 17th in total this season
  • Magdeburg are coming off a 33:29 win over Füchse Berlin in the Bundesliga
  • Magdeburg coach Bennet Wiegert: "Running through the Bundesliga without losing points naturally raises expectations. However, expectations can also quickly lead to disappointment. So we humbly enjoy this moment and focus on Logrono and the European League"
  • La Rioja, with two wins in a row, are currently the fourth club of the Spanish league with both a win and a loss in European competition
  • the two sides have never met before in an official match
20211115 Elm Quote Velenje
A difficult match awaits us against one of the favourites of our group. They cultivate fast and likeable handball. We promise with the team that we will fight and leave our hearts on the court and do everything for a positive result.
Aleks Kavčič, player of Gorenje Velenje
RK Gorenje Velenje left back

GROUP D

Grundfos Tatabanya KC (HUN) vs Kadetten Schaffhausen (SUI)
Tuesday 16 November, 18:45 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • Tatabanya have lost their first two games and want to turn the tide on Tuesday
  • Kadetten have a perfect 10 wins in 10 games in the Swiss championship
  • in the last edition of the EHF European League, the teams also met with the Swiss side winning both games
  • Kadetten player Donat Bartok will visit his home country

AEK Athens HC (GRE) vs HC Eurofarm Pelister (MKD)
Tuesday 16 November, 18:45 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • Athens, who won the EHF European Cup last season, continued their good run by winning their first two matches of the current season
  • Dimitrios Tziras is the leading scorer for AEK after two rounds, with 12 goals
  • Pelister are after their first win in the competition
  • However, the Bitola-based team did get their first point in round 2, earning a 28:28 draw at Kadetten in Switzerland

USAM Nimes Gard (FRA) vs Sporting CP (POR)
Tuesday 16 November, 20:45 CEST, live on EHFTV

  • last year both teams also met in the EHF European League, with Nimes smiling at the end of each game
  • Sporting, led by coach Ricardo Costa, have been unbeatable so far, both in Europe and in the Portuguese league
  • Nimes boast a squad that is almost all-French, combining talent and experience
  • Sporting right wing Mamadou Gassama leads with 18 goals from two rounds
20211115 Elm Quote Sporting
We know we are going to face a strong opponent. USAM Nimes are currently in the top 5 teams in France, one of the strongest leagues in Europe. But playing for a club like Sporting CP, the mindset is always on the victory
Manuel Gaspar
Sporting CP goalkeeper

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