Diocou confident of second leg comeback
Mamadou Diocou remains confident that he and his Logroño La Rioja teammates can spark a comeback in their European League qualifier against TBV Lemgo when they meet for the second leg on Saturday.
Lemgo won the first leg 39:34 at their Phoenix Contact Arena, but the Spanish international scored seven goals on the night to ensure his team remained in contention for a place in the European League first round.
“It took us a long time to adapt to their game and to play ours,” Diocou said. “I think that by improving facets of our game and reducing some mistakes, the result could have been different.
“We had some good times during the first match and that gives us the strength to continue believing in ourselves. We trust ourselves and we still have a lot to say in the second leg.”
“We will need as much support as possible from our fans”
TBV Lemgo contain two players with an intimate knowledge of how Logroño will approach the match – the Guardiola brothers Gedeon and Isaias – who moved played for Logroño earlier in their careers.
“They are two very complete players with a lot of experience, and I wish them the best in their careers,” Diocou said. “Gideon did us a lot of damage on the pivot and we'll try to defend him as best as we can.”
Diocou, who played in Germany for Rhein-Neckar Lowen, is in his second season with La Rioja.
“German handball is much more physical and Spanish handball is more tactical,” he said.
“We are a very young team, with a lot of ambition and we will try to achieve all goals. I have the opportunity to learn and continue to grow in Logroño and I will make the most of it.”