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14.09.2007, 10:17
Ambitious Pick Szeged aim high
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The Hungarian champions have to replace two key players for the upcoming season, but the management are very optimistic. There are good signs already...

» »2007-08 Men's CL
»Group Matches
»Pick Szeged
»
 

Ambitious Pick Szeged aim high

In Szeged, Hungary, near the borders of Romania and Serbia, handball is just as important as sausages are. Pick, the salami producer of international fame, operate in Szeged, which is the fourth largest city of Hungary (160,000 citizens). Szeged is not only a cultural centre, but also a sports stronghold of Hungary.

Matic with the ball in the 2006/07 CL - he will have other duties nowThe handball club, Pick Szeged, is the most successful club of the region with their second championship title won this year after 1996. 3,200 fans celebrated the victory in the sports hall, “Városi Sportcsarnok”.

The new coach, Serbian Vladan Matic, was the left winger of the team until he was appointed coach during last season. He will have a new and exciting challenge now. The leading scorer and left back, Ferenc Ilyés, signed for the rival Veszprém team; the “cult” pivot, Richárd Mezei, ended his playing career.

Optimistic manager

Ambrus Lele did not throw in the towel, after all: “We want to win the first group phase in the Champions League and win as many matches as possible in the main round,” he says. “Our team is younger, quicker and stronger than it was in the previous season.”

A 24:23 victory at a test game against Spanish top team, Portland San Antonio, gives grounds for this optimism.

Right wing, Valentin Ghionea, is a great hope of the team. He was top scorer in the Romanian league as a Dinamo Bucharest player. He made such a deep impression on the club management right away that they offered him a five-year contract.

Goalkeeper Puljezevic is incredibly popular in SzegedA left winger of international fame, Luka Zvizej (former Barcelona and Santander player), also joined the team. In the pivot position, Pick Szeged signs the Romanian Iulian Stamate.

In addition to these players, there are also other strong ones, such as the popular goalkeeper, Nenad Puljezevic, playmaker, Daniel Andjelkovic, and left handed Milorad Krivokapic, a Serbian-born player with Hungarian passport. Jan Kirschner


TEXT: Jan Kirschner
 
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