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18.10.2007, 10:14
“We have to reinforce handball in Hamburg”
«Go back »Print Version


Read Björn Pazen's exclusive interview with HSV President, Andreas Rudolph.
 

“We have to reinforce handball in Hamburg”

Andreas Rudolph is the main sponsor and President of HSV Hamburg. He saved the club in 2004 after financial problems, and he has clear objectives concerning the future of the German runner-up and Champions League participant. Rudolph was born in Gummersbach, but now he is living near Hamburg. In an exclusive interview with Eurohandball.com the 51-year old multimillionaire company owner talks about HSV, Champions League and handball in Hamburg.

Key figure of the team, Pascal HensEurohandball.com: Before this season, HSV Hamburg was the only club in Germany – except for THW Kiel – that openly announced that the objective is winning the Bundesliga. Don’t you think you put pressure on the team with this statement?

Andreas Rudolph: You must have objectives. After finishing second after Kiel with goal difference and the same number of points, it is clear that we cannot target third or fourth place.

Eurohandball.com: Another objective you set was winning the Champions League by 2010…

Andreas Rudolph: Yes, we also want be successful on an international level. Winning the Champions League is also a dream and an objective for our club. Last season we won the Cup Winners’ Cup and in some years we want to win the Champions League. Without objectives you don’t even have to start.

Eurohandball.com: HSV Hamburg play their first season in the Champions League. After three victories in three matches you are on top of your group. Did you expect this?

The Korean star Yoon in the CWC Final last yearAndreas Rudolph: We are very satisfied with it so far. We expected to win against Viborg in our first match, but we could only hope to have a chance against a top club, Chechovski Medvedi, in Russia. Finally we won and we also took the hurdle in Zaporozhye. So it’s great and I’m totally glad about our start in the elite league.

Eurohandball.com: Is the Champions League an adventure for your club?

Andreas Rudolph: I think adventure is a wrong word. It’s a pleasure and an honour to play with the best teams in the world. This competition is a class of its own and we want to establish HSV in the Champions League for the forthcoming seasons. But in our first season, the most important is to learn. We are learning quickly and we are learning a lot.

Eurohandball.com: Some say now, that your team are among the favourites in the Champions League already this season…

Andreas Rudolph: The favourites are other teams now. I think about Kiel or the Spanish teams. Our first objective is to reach the second round. With three victories from the first three matches it looks that we can reach this objective. In the main round you have to see what teams we have to play against, and then we know what role we can play. But the team must improve first.

Eurohandball.com: What’s more important for the club: Toyota-Bundesliga or Champions League?Gille scores against Viborg in the first round

Andreas Rudolph: You cannot compare these competitions. Our objective is to win all titles. I don’t mind which titles we will win at the end. We need the Bundesliga for qualifying for the next Champions League, so our objective has to be to reach qualification every year. And another thing is important: we have to develop handball in Hamburg as he have strong rivals with football and ice hockey, so we need a successful top team to reinforce handball here.

Eurohandball.com: Next weekend HSV have a chance to win another title, the Champions Trophy in Celje. What do you expect from this?

Andreas Rudolph: It’s also a great honour for us to play there. However, you have to see that we will play the semi-final against the CL winner THW Kiel. If we win this match, everything is possible.


TEXT: Björn Pazen
 
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